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Mythical wild goose (hamsa)
Place of Origin: Thailand
Date: approx. 1850-1925
Materials: Brass
Style or Ware: Bangkok
Dimensions: H. 63 in x W. 29 1/2 in x D. 37 1/2 in, H. 160.0 cm x W. 75.0 cm x D. 95.5 cm
Credit Line: Gift from Doris Duke Charitable Foundation's Southeast Asian Art Collection
Department: Southeast Asian Art
Collection: Sculpture
Object Number: 2006.27.29
On Display: No

Description

Label:

In many Hindu and Buddhist contexts the wild goose (seen here in a highly stylized form) is associated with soaring high above the earth, and thus with detachment and spiritual attainment. In both northern and central Thailand a wooden or metal sculpture of a wild goose may be affixed to a tall pole in the precincts of a temple or palace. In central Thailand lines of poles topped with sculptures of wild geese such as this have also been used in the staging of elaborate royal funerals. In recent times wild goose sculptures atop poles sometimes have been used as light fixtures, with an electrified lamp suspended from the beak.

The hollow rod rising in the middle of this goose's back may have supported a tiered honorific parasol.


More Information

Exhibition History: "Emerald Cities: Arts of Siam and Burma" Asian Art Museum, October 23, 2009 - January 10, 2010
Label:

In many Hindu and Buddhist contexts the wild goose (seen here in a highly stylized form) is associated with soaring high above the earth, and thus with detachment and spiritual attainment. In both northern and central Thailand a wooden or metal sculpture of a wild goose may be affixed to a tall pole in the precincts of a temple or palace. In central Thailand lines of poles topped with sculptures of wild geese such as this have also been used in the staging of elaborate royal funerals. In recent times wild goose sculptures atop poles sometimes have been used as light fixtures, with an electrified lamp suspended from the beak.

The hollow rod rising in the middle of this goose's back may have supported a tiered honorific parasol.


Exhibition History: "Emerald Cities: Arts of Siam and Burma" Asian Art Museum, October 23, 2009 - January 10, 2010
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