Exhibitions/ Art Object
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Avalokiteshvara Padmapani

Date:
7th century
Culture:
Pakistan (Swat Valley)
Medium:
Bronze inlaid with silver and copper
Dimensions:
H. 8 3/4 in. (22.2 cm); W. 5 3/4 in. (14.6 cm); D. 4 1/8 in. (10.5 cm)
Classification:
Metalwork
Credit Line:
Harris Brisbane Dick and Fletcher Funds, 1974
Accession Number:
1974.273
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 237
Bodhisattva as the lotus-bearer Padmapani was a favored form of Avalokiteshvara, the embodiment of Buddhist compassion. His identifiers are the lotus (padma) held in his left hand, and the small figure of the Buddha Amitabha atop his head. In this early representation, he sits in royal ease, with one leg pendant and a hand poised as if gesturing contemplation. The antelope skin over his shoulder is a reminder of his ascetic nature, akin to Shiva.
Inscription: inscription on lotus petals surrounding base:

11/9/88 Prof. B.N. Mukherjei read the inscription preliminarly as:
(deva) (dharmo yain) (ura gava) (li)
(ka da sa) (rain pu choo) ( ja da)
[ each ( ) represents a lotus petal ]
"The religious gift-- [an image of ? ]
vragavalika dasa, born of rainpu choo"

Script is Brahmi of the 9th-10th century
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