This large size sculpture represents a damsel carrying a metal pan meant for a lamp and is popularly known as DeepaLakshmi. It was around the later half of the 16th century that the DeepaLakshmi statues came into being. The earliest of these statues were conceived at Vijayanagara and Madurai and were in no time a popular artefact of Nayak and Vijayanagara art styles of South India and a little after of Indian art.
They were cast both in metal
and clay. These statues were votive images conceived for Diwali Pooja and
with their lamps kindled were used as auspicious motifs to be worshipped
along with Lakshmi, the presiding deity of Deepawali festival, and Ganesha
who removed all obstacles. Initially such statues were gifted to patrons but
later they were also sold like other artefacts both for gifts and personal
Deepalakshmi statues, both in Vijayanagara and Nayak styles, were cast with
great minute details, sharp features with a blissful composure on face, tall
figure, a moderate size pan in hands worthy of use as a lamp and were highly
embellished and bejewelled. In Nayak style, however, the lower garment of
the figure rose from the foot up to breasts, whereas in Vijayanagara it
terminated on waist. The upper parts of the figure were wide and large
covered only by ornaments. The figure did not use a crown though her hair
were beautifully and crown-like dressed. Deepalakshmi was initially
conceived as a damsel and as such with just two hands carrying a lamp-like
pan, but later the figure was also cast with multiple hands, four, six,
eight or ten and with as many pans. This statue is obviously in Vijayanagara
The word Deepalakshmi sounds like one of the several forms of the scriptural
Indian deity Lakshmi, or Mahalakshmi, the consort of Vishnu, but save the
name this icon hasn't any scriptural basis or even a reference in ancient
Indian texts. Lakshmi has a scriptural tradition of her origin from the
churning of ocean and of her ten forms most of which she adopted as Vishnu's
consort and obviously along with his incarnations, more significantly as
Kamalodbhava with Vamanavatara, Bhumi with Parasuramasvatara, Sita with
Ramavatara and Rukmani with Krishnavatara. None of these ten forms is
Deepalakshmi. The Lakshmi concept, however, did not remain restricted to
texts alone. In the course of time Lakshmi cult came to be more or less a
tradition of faith, something between scriptures and folk, and was widely
inclusive of things or entities that had its character.
In popular faith Lakshmi is worshipped since ancient days as the goddess of
riches, prosperity and fertility. Hence, the term Lakshmi is now for ages
commonplace for anything or any person which or who effects prosperity or
weal. It has been for such reasons that even a cow, and sometimes even
cow-dung have been revered in Indian tradition as forms of Lakshmi for they
both instrumented riches and fertility. Lakshmi of the house is the most
commonly used epithet for a daughter and daughter-in-law. The Deepalakshmi
statue, as an auspicious votive artefact, is in the same way an expansion of
Lakshmi cult for this too is an auspicious motif aimed at bringing
prosperity and riches and is, thus, an artistic transformation or expansion
of the ancient Lakshmi concept itself. .
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.
How to keep a Brass statue well-maintained?
Brass statues are known and appreciated for their exquisite beauty and luster. The brilliant bright gold appearance of Brass makes it appropriate for casting aesthetic statues and sculptures. Brass is a metal alloy composed mainly of copper and zinc. This chemical composition makes brass a highly durable and corrosion-resistant material. Due to these properties, Brass statues and sculptures can be kept both indoors as well as outdoors. They also last for many decades without losing all their natural shine.
Brass statues can withstand even harsh weather conditions very well due to their corrosion-resistance properties. However, maintaining the luster and natural beauty of brass statues is essential if you want to prolong their life and appearance.
In case you have a colored brass statue, you may apply mustard oil using a soft brush or clean cloth on the brass portion while for the colored portion of the statue, you may use coconut oil with a cotton cloth.
Brass idols of Hindu Gods and Goddesses are especially known for their intricate and detailed work of art. Nepalese sculptures are famous for small brass idols portraying Buddhist deities. These sculptures are beautified with gold gilding and inlay of precious or semi-precious stones. Religious brass statues can be kept at home altars. You can keep a decorative brass statue in your garden or roof to embellish the area and fill it with divinity.
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