Swat Valley, 7th c. Padmapani x 2

7th century, Swat Valley, Avalokiteshvara Padmapani, brass, at Asia Society

7th century, Swat Valley or Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara Padmapani, brass with copper and silver inlay, at the Asia Society Museum.

7th century, Swat Valley, Pakistan, Avalokiteshvara, brass, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (USA).

7th century, Swat Valley, Pakistan, Avalokiteshvara, brass, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (USA).

The first sculpture is classed as originating from Kashmir but is almost identical to the second one classed as Swat Valley. Padmapani has an effigy of Amitabha in his headdress, an antelope skin over his shoulder, a sacred thread across his chest and a long-stemmed lotus in one hand, no crown or jewellery. The face of the first statue is quite worn but one can appreciate that the nose and lips were wider than the second one, which displays Kashmiri facial features. There are also some slight variations in the length of the dhoti and the incised decoration on the base, however, the pleats of the dhoti and the way it is fastened are typical of Swat Valley area sculptures.

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