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Achala, Destroyer of Evils

Artist/maker unknown, Nepalese

Made in Nepal, Asia

Early 16th century

Gilded bronze with turquoise, spinel rubies, and lapis lazuli or azurite

3 7/8 × 3 5/8 × 2 3/4 inches (9.8 × 9.2 × 7 cm)

Curatorial Department:
South Asian Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Bequest of Erwin Swann, 1975

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Achala raises his sword to cut away ignorance. He once also held a lasso used to guide wandering souls. The whirling tassels of his scarf emphasize the dynamism of his namesake posture, Achala-asana, characterized by lunging forward on the right leg, the left knee bent and left foot raised skyward. A popular deity among Buddhist Newars in Nepal, Achala is depicted as both a central and supporting figure in many paintings. The pleated front tassel and incised floral patterns on his skin-tight shorts (dhoti) are characteristic of Malla period costume and refined sculptures of the era.