Sculptor unattributed
Stone, alabaster
© Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum

Yellow Room 

Slideshow Shim

Parvati, 1880-1930

Parvati is the gentle and nurturing aspect of Hindu goddess Shakti. She is the Hindu goddess of love, fertility and devotion. Parvati is the wife of the Hindu god Shiva and the mother to Ganesha and Skanda. Parvati is generally portrayed as a gentle, nurturing mother goddess, but is also associated with several fearsome forms to vanquish evil beings such as Durga, Kali, the ten Mahavidyas, and the Navadurgas. Her mount is a lion which can be seen at her feet here.

From being born as a human, showing determination and perseverance in marrying Shiva to realising with great effort her true power and potential, awakening the Adi Shakti (the Divine Feminine) in herself, and becoming a goddess venerated by the Trimurti and the rest of the entire universe, Parvati inspires a person to embrace their human strengths and flaws, and utilise them to achieve their highest potential, to live life with their head held up high.

This figure of Parvati, which was previously thought to be Lakshmi, was presented to the Hon. J.F. Gruning by the Rajah of Kendujhar before it was donated to the museum in the 1940s. According to the museum’s accession register the figure has had a ‘new hand put on’ by the famous British painter Solomon Joseph Solomon, RA.


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