Bird Form Oil Lamp

20th Century
$580 USD
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W: 5.5" D: 5.5" H: 9.75"
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This late-19th century South Asian oil lamp is made of brass, taking on the shape of two stacked birds, one decorated with striated lines and a smaller one doubling as a wick holder. This lamp possibly depicts auspicious peacocks, often used in Hindu religious sculptures as a symbol of spiritual awakening and prosperity. Oil lamps like these were likely handcrafted using the century old lost-wax process of metal casting where skilled artisans would pour molten metal into a mold that had been created by means of a wax model.

Valued at homes and temples as part of ritualistic worship as well as celebratory decor, oil lamps hold great symbolic significance. Hindus believe the oil represents negative vasanas, or desires, and the wick represents ego. When the wick is lit with knowledge, both negativity and ego slowly perish, allowing a person to reach a higher spiritual plain. Serving as both a sculpture and functional object, this oil lamp will enlighten your interior with its own mystique.

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