VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Flying Celestials
Acc. No. L.55.22
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

This panel is one of the rare Chalukyan temple ceiling slabs in the collection of National Museum. This graceful masterpiece of the couple shows their legs bent at the knees as if they are flying without the aid of wings.

History of the Object
In the Deccan, over one hundred temples were built during the 7th and 8th century within the Early Western Chalukyan Empire (10th to 12th Century C.E.). Few of these temples are Jain in affiliation and the rest Hindu, and reflect the religious leanings of different emperors. The ceiling slab depicts a flying celestial couple. This graceful representation of the couple shows their legs bent at the knees as if they are flying without the aid of wings. The male figure is clad in a short lower garment and the female is draped in a sari. The soft fluttering garments and depiction of clouds suggest skyward movement of the divine couple.

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Type
Sculpture 
Materials
Buff Sandstone 
Measurements
135 x 109 x 23 cm 
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
Karnataka 
Geography
India 
Time period
AD 7th century ~ AD 7th century 
Creation date
7th Century CE 
Function
Hinduism Ritual  
Acquisition
On loan from Archaeological Survey of India through department of Archaeology South Western Circle, Aurangabad.  
Copyright
National Museum,New Delhi  
Acknowledgements
National Museum,New Delhi  
Owner
National Museum,New Delhi 
Museum
National Museum-New Delhi 
Credit line
National Museum,New Delhi  

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