- THE COLLECTION
- THE SPIRIT OF THE GALLERY
Upper part of a bust showing a lovely head of a goddess in grey-green schist typical to the Swat Valley. The finely crafted head is that of a woman with a full and round face, long hair with well-defined strands falling to the shoulders, a pearl diadem worn low on her forehead. On the back of the head, there is a slightly damaged solar disc. The back of the sculpture is flat; it would have been affixed to the wall of a Stupa. The work is delicate and well preserved.
The solar disc is an attribute coming from Indian tradition, which confirms the cosmic link bounding the gods to the universe. This belief might itself been imported from Persia by the Mazdaist priest. It was then incorporated into Buddhism. Gandharan art, born on Indian soil and in the service of the Buddhist religion, uses iconographic elements drawn from the religious repertory and artfully combines them with the sculpting techniques introduced by the Greek soldiers from Macedonia then from Bactria, who had followed Alexander the Great. Works in bas-relief, of grey schist coming from the valleys of Afghanistan and Pakistan, are one of the characteristics.