A red sandstone celestial woman (Surasundari) Rajasthan or Central India, circa 11th century
Lot 49
A red sandstone celestial woman (Surasundari) Rajasthan or Central India, circa 11th century
US$ 30,000 - 50,000
£18,000 - 30,000
Auction Details
Lot Details
A red sandstone celestial woman (Surasundari)
Rajasthan or Central India, circa 11th century
Carved in deep relief with exaggerated curves, her face with slender elongated eyes downcast above an alluring smile, her right arm upraised sending her shawl cascading down to outline her sensuous torso with large rounded breasts adorned with beaded necklaces falling between them, her left elbow touches the small of her arched back while beaded swags grace her thighs and wrap around the contours of her hips.
17 in. (43.2 cm) high

Footnotes

  • The attitude of her arms, suggesting a dancing pose, together with the almost impossibly curving torso and hips, creates a remarkable sinuous and sensuous line. As observed by Pal (Indo-Asian Art, 1971, p. 25), "Her posture is so exaggerated that her serpentine body appears to be altogether boneless. This is clearly reminiscent of the Indian poet's colorful analogy between the female form and the languorous, entwining creeper, apparently without substance but charged with endless rhythm."

    This figure is not consciously posing, but nevertheless she is a sarasundari, a celestial beauty whose presence on the temple wall is auspicious. Such figures strengthen the potency of the prayers offered in the temple as their beauty beckons the deity to listen to them.

    Published:
    Pratapaditya Pal, Indo-Asian Art from The John Gilmore Ford Collection, Baltimore, 1971, pl. 10.

    Provenance:
    John Gilmore Ford Collection, Baltimore before 1971
    Private American Collection
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  1. Mark Rasmussen
    Specialist - Southeast Asian, Indian and Himalayan Art
    Bonhams
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  2. Edward Wilkinson
    Specialist - Southeast Asian, Indian and Himalayan Art
    Bonhams
    Work
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    Los Angeles, 90046
    United States
    Work +1 323 436 5430
    FaxFax: + 323 850 5843
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