Khmer Shiva Sandstone Figure

The Khmer civilisation is one known for its art and architecture deeply rooted in religion and worship, most celebrated in the temples and ruins of Angkor, Cambodia. This sandstone sculpture represents the male Hindu figure Shiva, in the style of 11th century Baphoun period of South East Asia. The ancient deity is revered as the supreme god form of both creation and destruction.

The Baphoun art uses a more naturalistic approach to the figure than that of other South East Asian periods, while using stylised clothing and headgear. The figures of a less-monumental scale have simple features with slightly smiling faces, and are looked upon as great symbols of worship. The Shiva wears an intricately detailed usnisa headpiece and a vertically pleated sampot tied elaborately at the front to suggest his sovereignty.

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