Mar 18, 2014

Brahma

Brahma

c. 1890

Watercolor, graphite, ink, and tin on paper

Painting only: 45.1 x 27.7 cm (17 3/4 x 10 7/8 in.)

Gift of William E. Ward in memory of his wife, Evelyn Svec Ward 2003.148

Location

Did you know?

Brahma once had five heads, but the god Shiva decapitated one of them.

Description

The god of creation has four arms and four heads. The manuscript in his upper right hand indicates that he is the source of sacred knowledge as the quintessential Brahman. The lotus flower in his lower right hand references birth and procreation. He would typically hold a rosary and water pot in his left hands, which are here difficult to clearly identify given the cursory style of Kalighat painitngs. His mount, the goose, examines the ground at his feet.

See also

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