Durga Confronts the Army of the Demon Chikshura: Scene from the Devi Mahatmya

At the command of Mahisha, the demon general Chikshura approaches Durga with a great army of lesser demons, chariots, horses, and elephants and thus opens the battle between Mahisha and Durga, described in the Devi Mahatmya as lasting one hundred years. Durga is shown seated on her lion mount brandishing the many weapons given to her by Shiva, Krishna, Agni, Indra, Yama, and others. The soft line of the charcoal suggests that this image was transferred from an original drawing that had been pounced (pierced with small holes so that charcoal dust could sift through). The red ocher was then applied to bring this sketch to a more finished state.

Charcoal and ocher on paper


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Metropolitan Museum of Art

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