Two New Yorkers spend six months 18 months!?! in Bangalore and other places in India.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Vishnu print

While in Cochin we bought two old prints from some of the many antique shops there. I'd wanted one for a long time, and it seemed like the right place. If you find yourself in Cochin some day looking for prints of your own, don't pay too much, thinking that they may be rare. The shops' godowns (warehouses) are filled with dusty, ripped, bug-eaten pictures just waiting to go to a good home. We know because one of the shop keepers took us out back to look at more. After a few minutes they all began to run together.

Here's our first print, which is all about Vishnu. The many ways you can tell this is Vishnu include the many-headed snake looking over him, his conch, his discus, and the kind of V mark on his forehead. From a little googling it appears that the consorts on either side of Vishnu are Bhu (goddess of the earth) and Shri (goddess of prosperity). The British Library has a nice Chola bronze depicting this threesome.

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