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Shiva the Bull-Rider (Vrishabhavana), c. 1000

India: Tamil Nadu, 975-1025
39-1/2 x 13-1/2 x 10-1/2 in. (100.3 x 34.3 x 26.7 cm)
The Norton Simon Foundation
© The Norton Simon Foundation

Not on View

The majestic Shiva (right) stands in a relaxed posture and would have leaned upon the head of his bull, known as Nandi or Vrisha, which is now missing. The god's recognizable attributes include his elaborate hairstyle, in which his long matted hair is piled up on top of his head to form a crown, his elaborate jewelry, and his armbands. His wife and companion, Parvati (F.1982.2.2.S), is the embodiment of feminine beauty and grace.

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