Durga Killing the Buffalo Titan
10th-11th century
Asia: Indonesia, Central Java
On View

Unable to destroy the fierce demon Mahisha, who takes the form of a buffalo, the Hindu gods created Durga to be their champion and gave her their weapons. This sculpture depicts the goddess in the moment of victory, having just slain the buffalo. Mahisha rises from the beast’s body, revealing himself to be a repugnant dwarfed figure. Images of Durga from Java typically depict her in this triumphal moment, whereas those from India often portray the goddess in the act of slaying the buffalo demon.


  • Title: Durga Killing the Buffalo Titan
  • Date: 10th-11th century
  • Medium: Andesite
  • Dimensions: 24 x 11-1/2 x 7-3/4 in. (61.0 x 29.2 x 19.7 cm)
  • Credit Line: Norton Simon Museum, Gift of Pratap and Chitra Pal in memory of their mothers
  • Accession Number: P.1997.3
  • Copyright: © Norton Simon Museum

Object Information

Durga: The Great Goddess Revealed

  • Honolulu, Honolulu Academy of Arts, 2004-09-08 to 2004-12-05

Durga: Avenging Goddess, Nurturing Mother

  • Norton Simon Museum, 2005-10-07 to 2006-03-27
  • Pal, Pratapaditya, Asian Art at the Norton Simon Museum, Volume 3: Art from Sri Lanka & Southeast Asia, 2004, fig. 1, no. 72 pp. 75, 86, 88-89
  • Pal, Pratapaditya, Durga: Avenging Goddess, Nurturing Mother, 2005, fig. 17 pp. 23, 33
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