Sculpture 'chapel' and other carved fragments, from Mala Tangi, Peshawar District
Photographer: Cole, Henry Hardy
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of a sculpture, 'chapel' and other carved fragments from Mala Tangi, boxed for transportation, taken c.1883 and attributed to Henry Hardy Cole (probably incorrectly) . According to Theodor Bloch's list of negatives in the Indian Museum (1900) these objects were said now to be in Madras. From the first and second centuries AD onwards, Peshawar district, in northern Pakistan, became famous for it's sculptural traditions. Known as Gandhara, it was ruled by a dynasty of Chinese origin called the Kushans. They were Buddhists and under their rule, the religion, and the arts associated with it were allowed to flourish. The reign of the Kushan king Kanishka, is particularly well known for its artistic achievements and it was during his reign, from 78 AD, that we find the first examples of the Graeco-Roman influenced Gandharan style of sculpture. The classical influence on these sculptures can be seen, in the figures draped clothing, their curly hair and the naturalistic modelling of their bodies.