Brass Figure of Garuda

SKU OF.011
Circa

1800 AD to 1900 AD

Dimensions

11.6″ (29.5cm) high x 5.1″ (13.0cm) wide

Medium

Brass

Origin

India

Gallery Location

UK


 

Garuda is a minor Hindu deity, originally associated with the sun, who serves as the mount of Vishnu. This brass sculpture depicts him kneeling on one leg with his palms grasped together in adoration (anjalimudra). According to his traditional iconography, he appears in the form of a man with a hooked beak instead of a nose and large leaf-like wings. This piece is likely to have been the focus of private devotions, although larger images of Garuda were often placed in temples opposite the main shrine dedicated to Vishnu. Garuda was the enemy of snakes, also known as nagas, and this fact is referred to by the snake caught under his left knee. Dressed in a close-fitting dhoti with a sash around the waist, he also wears a strikingly tall conical headdress which was originally the support for an offerings tray that was used to present flower petals etc at important shrines.

The figure is mounted on a tiered pedestal with a square base, which is inspired by European bases of the 18th and early 19th centuries, thus dating the piece. This is substantiated by the multiple casting made to form the figure and the wings, which have been attached separately. This is an impressive work in excellent condition.

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