The Cleveland Museum of Art's Indian and Southeast Asian collection is rated as one of the leading collections in this area, both nationally and internationally.
The Indian Southeast Asian art collection comprises three broad areas: India proper, the Himalayas, and Southeast Asia. The collection covers the period of the entire artistic activity on the Indian subcontinent from the earliest (Neolithic) period until the 20th century. It consists primarily of sculpture (in stone, metal, wood, terra cotta, and ivory) and paintings (book illustrations as well as devotional paintings on cloth as seen in the Himalayan tangkas), but it also includes some decorative arts such as jewelry and armor. It is a well-balanced collection, both in its scope and breadth; the focus, however, is on the high points of artistic production during the early and medieval periods from the second century BC to the 18th century. The strength of the collection lies not in its quantity but in its quality.
The reinstallation of the West Wing Galleries is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.