The Lumbini Museum today hosted a reception on April 25 to announce its vision for a world-class museum of Buddhism in the birthplace of the Buddha, Lumbini. Addressing an intimate gathering of government representatives, private sector leaders, diplomats and cultural experts, the Museum’s Founding Director, Sumnima Udas highlighted the importance of the legacy of Buddha and Lumbini for Nepal and expressed the Museum’s commitment to preserving that heritage and drawing international attention to it. Located inside the Sacred Garden Area of Lumbini, a UNESCO World Heritage site, Phase I of the Lumbini Museum will be housed in a heritage building designed by the Pritzker Prize-winning Japanese architect Kenzo Tange. The 1970s masterpiece is now being re-imagined by leading Taiwanese architect Kris Yao and his team to curate an entirely new cultural and spiritual experience. In a presentation to the audience, the Museum unveiled initial plans and stated that they will be working in partnership with Lumbini Development Trust as well as a wide range of national and global experts and supporters.
Several speakers addressed the gathering, emphasising the importance of Lumbini to the cultural and spiritual identity of Nepal and the opportunity it presents to showcase the best of Nepal’s rich heritage. Ven. Metteyya Sakyaputtavice,Vice Chairman of Lumbini Development Trust; Suraj Vaidya, National Coordinator of Visit Nepal 2020; journalist and author Vijay Kumar Pandey and reknowned Buddhist teacher His Eminence Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche spoke at the event expressing their support for the initiative. This marks the formal beginning of Phase I of the Lumbini Museum Initiative. The team is now working to fulfil fundraising priorities, commission and curate artworks and mobilise global partnerships and expertise in service of the vision to provide a truly world-class experience at The Lumbini Museum.