This exquisitely carved round stone plate was used for preparing sandalwood paste used for ritual purposes. The obverse of the plate is just a grainy plain surface on which sandalwood stick was rubbed with water to obtain the paste. The reverse of the plate (as seen in the picture) was intricately carved with floral motifs.
This object speaks of the understated aesthetic engagement with an ordinary object of day-to-day use. The functional side (the obverse) is just a plain grainy surface while all adornment is done on its non-functional side which becomes visible to a viewer only when after washing the plate it is left for drying against a wall. The multi-petalled lotus medallion in the centre and the three tiny, half inverted bell-shaped lotus footholds in combination with a scrolling creeper along the edge make this object of everyday life a true masterpiece.