Vishnu the Preserver is most often portrayed holding the militant attributes that symbolize his protective role: in his upper right hand, a chakra (war discus), and in his upper left, a shankha (conch battle trumpet). In addition, his lower left hand makes the gesture of resting on a gada (mace). His lower right hand is held in abhayamudra (the gesture that allays fear). The upright prongs at either side of the pedestal originally supported a halo.
Kansas City. William Rockhill Nelson Gallery of Art. "Master Bronzes of India," 1965.
New York. Asia House Gallery. "Master Bronzes of India," October 12, 1965–December 11, 1965.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Masterpieces of Fifty Centuries," November 14, 1970–June 1, 1971.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Masterpieces of the Art of India from the Museum's Collections," January 18, 1973–April 1, 1973.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Bronze Sculptures from Asia," February 25, 1975–March 21, 1976.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Encountering Vishnu: The Lion Avatar in Indian Temple Drama," December 19, 2015–June 5, 2016.