The Bodhisattva Padmapani Lokeshvara

Nepal, Kathmandu Valley

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 252

Padmapani (“The Lotus-Bearer”) stands majestically, his lowered hand in the boon-granting gesture (varadamudra) while his raised hand holds the stem of a white lotus (padma) that blooms above his shoulder, serving to invoke the purity of Buddhist thought. Padmapani is finely dressed and bejeweled, as befits a savior prince. Flowers decorate his waist cloth, secured with a jeweled belt. Settings indicate where gems once adorned him. The stylization of the figure is a reminder that the artist responsible was strictly following ritual manuals of design (citrasastras). Superb modeling, imposing scale, and majestic bearing combine to create one of the greatest Nepalese Buddhist sculptures known.

The Bodhisattva Padmapani Lokeshvara, Copper alloy with gilding and semiprecious stones, Nepal, Kathmandu Valley

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