This statue, an excellent work of metal-cast, represents Krishna as playing on his flute, a form known in the iconographic tradition as Venu Gopal, sometimes with a cow in the background and sometimes without any. Rare emotionality suggests that spontaneous to the melody emitting from the flute his legs might have moved and the entire figure twisting to its notes might have transformed into multi-curves. A great divine drama, as the Creator of this world he allows its ‘Maya’ – great Illusion, to delude him, he is enraptured by the melody which he himself is creating on his flute. These are such mystic dimensions that impart unique significance to an otherwise simple flute-playing form which is also one of his most popular manifestations in ‘lalita-rupa’. The divine ecstasy, the flute-player’s own creation, leaves the flute player transformed into a rhythmic trance. Now from his face and figure reveals the divine bliss and the unique ‘bhava’, in which blends contentment, rapture and essence of music, dance and divine grace.
The figure of Lord Krishna is placed on a high and elaborately rendered circular ‘pitha’ – pedestal, consisting of double rows of lotuses, neck comprising a ring of beads and a plain apex with beaded edge. Besides his feet, one fully and the toe of the other settled on it, the two sash-ends unfurling on sides support the figure on the pedestal. Around his waist he is putting on an exquisitely conceived loincloth overlaid with decorative bands and supported by a broad girdle with frills of beautiful bells like pendants hanging on it all around the waist. The only other pieces of ensemble, two exceptionally decorative sashes or scarves, attached to the girdle unfurl most artistically on either side. The figure has been adorned from toes to head with heavy ornaments – gold bangles, bracelets, armlets, necklaces, anklets and so on. Most interesting are the ‘makara kundalas’ – the crocodile like designed ear-ornament, a piece of typical Vaishnava ornaments. The crown is also strangely modeled. It seems to consist of three components, a lotus-bud like apex, a semi-circular course of peacock feathers like designed crest just above the forehead and two ear-guards like members over the ears. The image has been conceived with a round face, sharp features with a pointed nose, moderately sized eyes in the state of ecstasy, a neck with three folds, and a delightful anatomy with a subdued belly.
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.