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The Hindu deities Shiva and Parvati

Apart from their damaged limbs, these 1,000-year-old Cambodian sculptures survive in excellent condition, and the fact that they have remained together makes them rare. These statues would have been in the inner sanctuary of a Hindu temple, a huge stone complex built up like a step pyramid, with the sanctuary at the top. Images of Shiva acting out his power in the world might be found on the outside of an ancient Cambodian temple, but inside the temple the deity would be shown standing upright and still, conveying a sense of resolute calm to all who gazed upon him. Learn more about the deities Shiva and Parvati.

The third eye in the middle of the forehead of the male figure identifies him as the Hindu deity Shiva. His wife is Parvati. Both these deities can be represented in supernatural forms with multiple arms, and both have violent and frightening forms as well. Here, however, they are shown in the guise of a graceful young man and woman. Before and after the period of these sculptures, Angkorian art usually emphasized the power and remoteness of the gods. In the late 900s, however, and continuing for several generations, gentleness and sensitivity were sometimes emphasized. Notice here the carefully calculated contrast of minutely textured clothing and jewelry with the expanses of smooth, soft skin. The sculptor has also taken advantage of the different color tonalities of the two pieces of stone. Scientific study has shown that they came from different parts of a single quarry.
Stworzone przez: Asian Art Museum.

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