G682.1 TERRACOTTA HEAD OF SURYA
NORTHEAST INDIA, BENGAL OR BANGLADESH
GUPTA PERIOD, 4TH-5TH CENTURY
H. 19 CMS, 7 ½ INS
An outstanding buff terracotta head of a male deity, probably the sun god Surya, with a smooth even surface, the face serene and gently smiling, with almond-shaped eyes beneath curved brows and an intricate jeweled diadem, the nimbus adorned with a striated circular emblem likely representing the sun.
The sculpture has a wonderful sense of calm and inner peace. The fleshiness of the facial features are typical of the Gupta period.
Reference: For a closely related image of Vishnu in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, please see the following link: https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/53472
For an almost identical head see p. 143 in the Musée Guimet, Chefs-d’œuvre du delta du Gange: Collections des musées du Bangladesh, Paris: Musée des arts asiatiques Guimet, Exhibition catalogue, 2007.
Provenance: Private English collection.
Acquired in 2013 from Alexis Renard Gallery, Paris.