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Sculptures > Wood > Devi Lakshmi as Padmavati (Lotus Goddess)
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Devi Lakshmi as Padmavati (Lotus Goddess)

Devi Lakshmi as Padmavati (Lotus Goddess)

Devi Lakshmi as Padmavati (Lotus Goddess)

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South Indian Temple Wood Carving

46.0" X 17" X 7"
21.68 Kg
Item Code:
RL17
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$995.00   Shipping Free - 4 to 6 days
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Devi Lakshmi as Padmavati (Lotus Goddess)

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Viewed 15428 times since 1st Aug, 2012
This four-armed divine image, carrying in each of her two upper hands a bunch of lotuses, and lower ones held in ‘abhaya’ and ‘varada’, imparting freedom from fear as also from worldly bonds, and bestowing blissfulness, represents Padmavati, Lakshmi’s or Shri’s transformation especially popular in southern part of India. Like Vishnu who is worshipped in India’s southern part as Venkatesh or Balaji, Lakshmi, his spouse, is known and worshipped as Padmavati and sometimes as Shri. Unlike the north India where Lakshmi enshrines, if ever, the sanctum of a Lakshmi-Narayana temple along with Vishnu and has hardly a shrine dedicated to her independent of him, in southern part Lakshmi in her transformation as Padmavati is widely worshipped and has a number of shrines dedicated independently to her. This statue of the goddess seeks her distinction as Padmavati in lotus motifs in exact adherence to her classical iconographic norms. Besides the bunches of them held in her upper hands and a larger one under her feet forming the statue’s pedestal, the figure has auspicious lotus motifs also on her lower right and left palms.

An excellent wood-piece, the statue is one of the finest examples of South Indian sculptural art, both wood-work and metal cast, as also of its decorative cult matured over centuries. Nor merely well defined sharp features – round face, lotus eyes, arched eye-brows, sharp nose, pointed chin, cute sensually modeled lips perfectly aligning to both, the chin and the nose, and rounded cheeks, or a balanced figure with perfect modeling and absolute anatomical proportions, especially in conceiving breasts, waist, gestures and entire anatomy, the statue as ingeniously discovers in colours the beauty of its various parts, ornaments, textiles, fire-arch, pedestal, besides the goddess’ body colour. Here the art of colours synthesises with three dimensional plastic art of woodcraft and creates timeless effects and an art-piece of rare beauty.

As have most divine images, this Padmavati image too has symbolic dimensions. It is a microbial representation of the universe which the fire-arch symbolises and which the great goddess pervades with her divine aura, celestial beauty and feminine grace, besides her unique splendour. The fire-arch rises from a lotus base. Lotus synthesises elements of water, earth and sky and hence stands for their unity in one form. The fire-arch represents its fuller, that is, cosmic magnification, though not beyond the goddess who pervades it. The apex of the fire-arch merges with the goddess’ crown to which it is subordinated. All forms of Lakshmi are auspicious and bring prosperity, success, growth, good health, abundance and fertility, but her form as Padmavati is considered dually auspicious, as the lotus – symbol of creativity, multiplication and purity, more emphatically associated with this form multiplies its divinity.

This description by Prof. P.C. Jain and Dr. Daljeet. Prof. Jain specializes on the aesthetics of literature and is the author of numerous books on Indian art and culture. Dr. Daljeet is the curator of the Miniature Painting Gallery, National Museum, New Delhi. They have both collaborated together on a number of books.


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