Nepal (Kathmandu Valley)
Shiva linga are variously represented as an unadorned pillar or with one, four, or five heads of Shiva. This linga altar has a four-faced form (chaturmukha). It is banded, likely with munja grass h...
A sandstone figural relief of Surya
Central India, 10th/11th Century
The solar deity standing in a frontal hieratic pose with both hands raised and holding a stylized blossoms, a small figure of his consort standing between his boots and accompanied by his two sons Shani and Yama standing on the...
Sarasvati, goddess of speech, learning, and the arts, is revered by Hindus, Jains, and Buddhists alike. Associated especially with music and knowledge, she plays the vina (a stringed instrument) and holds a palm-leaf manuscript. Here, she a...
Plaque with a Royal Family
1st century B.C.
India (West Bengal, Chandraketugarh)
This family scene and the touching intimacy that permeates it are unusual in Indian terracotta. With his left hand, the man, seated on a chair, holds the back of his wife's head: she stands ...
In the beginning of the Heian period (794–1185), the priest Kūkai (774–835) brought from China into Japan a new type of Esoteric Buddhism known in Japanese as mikkyō. Esoteric Buddhist practices worshiped a wide range of deities using rituals that required special implements, mystical incantation...
Uma is a mother goddess, and she is depicted here as turning toward her consort, the Hindu god Shiva, a companion sculpture from which this image of Uma has been separated. The grace and femininity of this solid-cast fig...