26 July 2017

In Memoriam: Dr. Dina Bangdel

It is with a heavy heart that we announce the sad news of the passing of our dear colleague and friend Dr. Dina Bangdel, the Director of our Art History department.

Dina will be very much missed as a scholar, teacher, mentor, colleague, friend, mother, and wife. Her dedicated and loving spirit was an inspiration to all of us. We will continue to hold her in our hearts and value her immense and varied contributions to VCU and VCUQatar's educational mission.

A valued member of the faculty of both campuses, Dina began her work at Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts - Richmond in 2005 as an Assistant Professor of Art History.  After earning tenure and the rank of Associate Professor, she became Director of the Art History program at VCUQatar in 2012.  

We are deeply affected by her loss. She contributed so much through her expertise as a scholar of Asian art and as a result of her thoughtful service as an administrator. 

Dina was an internationally regarded historian of South Asian and Himalayan art, with secondary areas of interest relating to issues of gender and identity in South Asian contemporary art and film. Her interests in the early modern period focussed on the ritual and ideological functions of Buddhist art in South Asia, including theories of ritual performance and politics of identity.

She curated several exhibitions, including Circle of Bliss: Buddhist Meditational Art (2003, finalist for the Alfred Barr Award for best exhibition catalogue) at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Pilgrimage and Faith: Buddhism, Christianity and Islam (2010) at the Rubin Museum, New York, Prakriti Speaks: Contemporary Nepali Art (2011) in Mumbai.

She is survived by her husband and two sons and will be sorely missed by all who knew her. 

Our deepest sympathies and condolences and thoughts go to all of her family members in these difficult times.

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