Shiva Nataraja (Lord of Dance)

Shri Rajan Industries


Shiva, the Auspicious One, is shown here as the Lord of Dance (Shiva Nataraja), a form he takes to bring the universe to an end so that it may be purified and recreated anew. The ring of flames around the figure is the cosmic fire of destruction. He dances upon a figure that represents ignorance, suggesting that worship of Shiva dispels the ignorance that obscures the truth. This iconography originated in southern India over one thousand years ago. Cast in 2013 at Sri Rajan Industries, a foundry in Tamilnadu, India, the sculpture is a continuation of this sacred tradition.

  • Titles Shiva Nataraja (Lord of Dance) (Proper)
  • Artist Shri Rajan Industries, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Medium cast bronze
  • Dimensions 65 × 52 × 21 3/4 in. (165.1 × 132.1 × 55.2 cm) (base) 29 × 16 1/4 in. (73.7 × 41.3 cm)
  • Credit Line Collection of the Art Fund, Inc. at the Birmingham Museum of Art; Gift of Dora and Sanjay Singh in honor of Dr. Donald A. Wood for his dedicated service to Asian Art at the Birmingham Museum of Art, AFI.130.2015
  • Work Type sculpture
  • Classification Sculpture
  • On View