Mask of Bhairava

India (Jammu and Kashmir, ancient kingdom of Kashmir)

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 237

This object is from a rare group of early Brahmanical masks. The small fangs seen rising from the corners of the open mouth and the exposed upper teeth identify this deity as Bhairava, a wrathful form of Shiva. Such masks were employed as temporary fixtures during worship and used to enliven processional icons in the Brahmanical cultures of northwestern India and the territories of Gandhara in Pakistan.

Mask of Bhairava, Copper alloy, possibly brass, India (Jammu and Kashmir, ancient kingdom of Kashmir)

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.