This murti is expressive of the complex symbolism of the Hoysala tradition. The conch and the discus in His posterior hands are indispensable to the Vaishnava iconography. They are raised such as to frame the distinctive hayasheersha (‘sheersha’ is the Sanskrt word for head). On the lap of the folded leg is seated His wife, Devi Lakshmi. Both the male and the female deities are clad in a dhoti below the navel while their upper bodies are bedecked with a world of shringar; this is in keeping with the traditional iconography of the millennium-old Hoysala tradition.
Lord Hayagreeva is seated on an upturned lotus pedestal. While the padmasana (‘padma’ stands for lotus, ‘asana’ for throne) may not be exclusive to Hoysala iconography, it is a fixture of the temple walls and complices of the times. The entire ensemble is on a flat quadrilateral base of bronze, making it a compact monotone composition.
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