This wiry but extremely expressive bronze figure of the goddess Durga compacts the widely popular Indian myth of the Mahishasuramardini. The image shows the goddess carrying weapons in her many arms and trampling upon Mahisha. Below her is decapitated buffalo from which the anthropomorphic Mahisha is seen emerging. The goddess’s lion vehicle too is seen attacking the demon. The entire scene is a tableau mounted on a pedestal.
According to Hindu scriptures, Mahisha the demon who was a devotee of Shiva was destroying the sacrificial altars of the sages. On complaint from the sages, the gods created Shakti or Durga to annihilate Mahisha. Empowered by the gods, Durga killed Mahisha and other Demons.