“Visuality” refers to what is expressed, perceived, and created through “vision” in its wider sense. An object of vision may be simple or complex, it may be short-lived or more permanent, and may be carried and communicated by various media. Visual manifestations of religious rituals are used by religions all over the world in an attempt to lead humanity towards greater perfection. In India, religious rituals speak an intricate “visual language” and it is revealing to perceive how visuality is valued and shaped during various kinds of rites. In the introduction to this thematic issue the guest editor explains how basically “anthropomorphic” forms are represented in statues, reliefs, and paintings, and that the aniconic or non-figural category is still well-represented in India. Although this issue is largely concerned with documentation and analysis, it also celebrates and indulges in religious visual culture. Temporary non-figural configurations with a complex visual aspect, in which one or several deities are invoked, also form a focus of this issue.
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