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Title

Guardian Lion

circa 1000 CE


Artists

Unknown Artist


About

Throughout the golden age of the Angkor period, the kings built huge cities and temple complexes symbolic of their power and divinity. One of these capitals was created in 921 by King Jayavarman IV at Koh Ker, about 65km from Angkor. This standing guardian lion has come from there. Such lions were placed on terraces and stairways to guard the central pyramidal structure that represented Mount Meru, the residence of the gods at the centre of the Hindu world. Lions where not native to Cambodia and the Khmer sculptors devised their own fanciful interpretations. The characteristic full, frontal pose and upright stance lend the figure a composed regal air, while the elaborately carved demonic head and patterned chest shows the Javanese influence so important in Khmer culture.

The Asian Collections, AGNSW, 2003, pg.314.


Details


Place where the work was made

Cambodia


Cultural origin

Koh Ker style


Date

circa 1000 CE


Media category

Sculpture


Materials used

beige sandstone


Dimensions

94.0 x 44.2 x 56.0 cm


Signature & date

Not signed. Not dated.


Credit

Purchased with funds provided by Mr F. Storch, R.M and D.M. Adair, T.R.W. Allen, Karl Berkeley, Bruce Bockman, Madeleine Baulken, J.S. Capon, Graham M. Cole, S.M. Gazal, Bruce C. Hudson, Daryl Isles, J.G. Jagelman, N. Jeffreson, Michael Magnus, D.A.M. McCathie, Rosalind O'Connor, L.H. Pockley, E.G. Sternberg, Robert M. White and Ken Yondale 1987


Location

Not on display


Accession number

443.1987



Place

Where the work was made
Cambodia

Shown in 1 exhibition

Exhibition history


Referenced in 4 publications

Bibliography


Liz Bennett, The Australian, 'Lion the pride of Asian collection', pg. 5, Sydney, 02 Sep 1987, 5 (illus.).

Jackie Menzies and Edmund Capon, Asian Collection Handbook, Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'South-East Asian Art', pg. 83-96, Sydney, 1990, 85 (illus.).

Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 2003, 314 (colour illus.).

Jacqueline Menzies, Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, 'Asian', pg. 72-93, Sydney, 1988, 90, 93 (illus.).