Parashurama, Rama with the Battle Ax

Y. G. Srimati Indian

Not on view

A large-scale religious work from Srimati’s early period, Parashurama depicts the sixth avatar of Vishnu. In this vengeful form Vishnu aimed to save the world from the tyranny of the aristocratic warrior class (ksatriya) and rid it of those rulers who neglect their sacred duties as kings. The mighty figure of Parashurama is seated as an ascetic on a tiger skin with his raised arm propped on a mendicant’s arm support. His brow is knotted as he looks angrily upon the world and fixes his stern gaze upon his weapon, a battle ax. Rolling storm clouds fill the background, contributing to the violent ugra mood of this painting.

Parashurama, Rama with the Battle Ax, Y. G. Srimati (Indian, 1926–2007), Watercolor on paper, India (Chennai)

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