Historical period(s)
15th century
H x W x D: 68.5 x 39.4 x 35.2 cm (26 15/16 x 15 1/2 x 13 7/8 in) Weight: 76.7 kg
India, Tamil Nadu state
Credit Line
Gift of Arthur M. Sackler
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Metalwork, Sculpture


casting, Hinduism, India, Shiva, WWII-era provenance
Provenance research underway.

In this solemn image, Shiva, seated in a posture of ease, promises protection with his upraised front hand. Shiva’s matted locks, which indicate that he is an ascetic, are arranged in an elaborate crown. His third eye represents his omniscience, and his direct gaze confers grace on his devotees.

In South India, artists created bronze images specifically for processions. On festival days, the bronzes were adorned with fine silks, jewelry, and flower garlands that had been given as gifts by devotees. Temple attendants carried the ornamented gods around temple and township to give blessings to everyone.

Published References
  • et al. Asian Art in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery: The Inaugural Gift. Washington, 1987. cat. 29, p. 66.
Collection Area(s)
South Asian and Himalayan Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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