Devi Mahishasuramardini Contained In a Ring Of Flames

Devi Mahishasuramardini Contained In a Ring Of Flames

Everything that is to be said about Devi Mahishasuramardini (slayer of Mahishasura) is in the mahalaya (maha means ‘great’; laya, tune), a piece of folk music from neighbouring Bengal. It expounds Her primal beauty, set off in turn by Her matchless ferocity. The sculpture you see on this page is a visual of the great laya - in terms of its superb execution of detail, as well as the iconography that is at once rooted and universal.

The primary identifying aspects of the Mahishasuramardini iconography is the Mahishasura (bull-demon) brought to his knees at Her feet. It is a powerful portrayal of adharma’s defeat - She has him by the hair, Her trishool piercing His very being, while the head of his mahisha has rolled off from the body that is dangling by the tail from another of Her hands. The tremors that could be read in his body language are the result of a skill that lends dynamism to even a static form of art.

The typical Nepal-style crown rests upon a brow lined with determination and invincibility. The kundalas from Her ears give way to a garland of severed demon-heads that reaches all the way down to her skirts. She is flanked by Her numberless arms, each bearing a divine weapon (note the damru in one, indicative of Her husband). The entire composition is framed by an aureole from which coils of fire are jutting out into space.

Item Code: ZEM670
11.30 inch Height x 8.70 inch Width x 3.50 inch Depth
3.3 kg
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