Yakshas Relief

Period: Licchavi period

Date: 8th–9th century

Culture: Nepal, Kathmandu Valley, possibly Deopatan

Medium: Stone

Dimensions: H. 10 5/8 in. (27 cm); W. 20 1/2 in. (52 cm)

Classification: Sculpture

Credit Line: Purchase, Jack Naiman Gift, 1986

Accession Number: 1986.259


Nepalese sculpture of the Licchavi period derives its simplified flowing volumes and artistic vocabulary from the art of the Guptas of northern India. Ganas or gnomes, caryatid figures that support water channels or, infrequently, columns, are among the motifs adopted from the Gupta. These paired ganas sit in a typical posture, back to back with their arms—seemingly supporting the ledge above—resting on their knees. On either side are stylized rocks, possibly intended to suggest an underground location.