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Sculptures > Hindu > Goddess > Goddess Padmavati
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Goddess Padmavati

Goddess Padmavati

Goddess Padmavati

Sold Out (Can be backordered)

South Indian Temple Wood Carving

37.5 inch X 15.0 inch X 3.8 inch
12.24 kg
Item Code:
$690.00   Shipping Free - 4 to 6 days
This item can be back ordered
Time required to recreate this artwork: 20 to 24 weeks
Advance to be paid now (% of product value): 20%
Balance to be paid once product is ready: 80%
The amount to be tendered as advance to back order this artwork: $138.00
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Viewed 5941 times since 10th May, 2011
This skillfully sculpted and brilliantly painted wood-sculpture represents Padmavati, Lord Vishnu’s consort and the most widely worshipped divinity in South, seated on a large lotus under an arched ‘vedika’ conceived in the sculptural tradition as Prabhavali. In Indian tradition ‘vedika’ – sanctum, is considered as the microbial representation of a temple, and Prabhavali, that of ‘vedika’. In wider contexts the temple is revered as the microcosm of the universe, and the deity enshrining it, as the manifestation of the Supreme pervading the universe. The lotus, the goddess is seated on, represents all three cosmic regions and all five elements the universe is composed of. Thus, the lotus-seated goddess enshrining the Prabhavali manifests the supreme divine power that pervades the cosmos, all known and unknown spaces and the time beyond scale.

The statue is an excellent example of the centuries’ old South Indian idiom of blending the arts of sculpting and painting, which on one hand discovers its forms by carving them, and on the other, their elegance, beauty and effect, by colouring. Not merely the character of Prabhavali comprising conventionalised forms of vines, leaves, flowers, mangos or tree-stumps and stylized birds, or the broad iconic features of the figure of the goddess : style of nose, eyes and lips in particular, even the over-dominance of lotuses in the iconography of Lord Vishnu’s consort is characteristically South Indian. Lotus is an essential element also in the iconography of Lakshmi, the name of Vishnu’s consort in wider tradition, such prevalence of lotus motif, as gives her form the name of Padmavati, corresponding to Lotus Goddess, is essentially the perception of her image in the South. 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, for the lotus, the symbol of creativity, multiplication and purity, more emphatically associated with this form, doubles its divinity.

As the tradition has it, Padmavati is Lakshmi’s form in her re-union with Vishnu when, after deserted by her, he emerged on the earth in her search and the two reunited. Once deputed by all sages to decide who among the Great Trinity was supreme sage Bhragu went to Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu for assessing their merit. Shiva, engaged with his consort in love making, did not take his notice; Brahma was rather rude; but he lost his temper when he found Vishnu sleeping carefree. The enraged sage hit him on his chest with his leg. Vishnu awoke but instead of punishing him prayed for his pardon. Feeling disgraced Lakshmi who was sleeping with him deserted Vishnu and left Vaikuntha. Unable to bear separation in her search Vishnu too descended on the earth. After ages of repentance and yearning one day Vishnu realised that like a lotus Lakshmi was sprouting within him and thus the two were re-united. The tradition consecrated this spiritual realisation of Vishnu as Lakshmi emerging from lotus which concretized as her lotus-seated form and was known as Padmavati. She was hence seen as both, Vishnu’s part, as also a divine entity by herself, being worshipped with him as also independent of him.

In this wood-statue, the lotus seat, the goddess is seated on, has been raised on a rectangular lotus podium with elegantly moulded corners. From its back rises a beautiful and elaborately carved Prabhavali consisting of conventionalised but immensely pleasing foliage with parts emerging like ripples of a rivulet. The four-armed figure of Padmavati, carrying in her upper two hands lotuses, in the lower right a mace, and the lower left being held in ‘abhaya’, is seated in ‘lalitasana’ revealing exceptional beauty of form. In modeling of form, plasticity, proportion and aestheticism the deity figure is outstanding. She has sharp features, emotionally charged face, sensually modeled breasts, subdued belly and narrow waist and a well-defined anatomy. Ornaments that she is wearing are few but elegantly rendered. As few but brilliant are the garments she is putting on. Her figure abounds in rare divinity but not born of theological considerations but of the divine lustre that her face breathes.

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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