Serpents in Art

Slitherins and Cthonians across the world of art. Images of serpents are used widely throughout the history of world art, from the crowns of Ancient Egypt to the emblem of modern medicine. Despite their broadly negative connotation in Western symbolism, snakes often embody ambiguous or even benevolent aspects in world myths.

What's Karttikeya sitting on? . . . . . What's coiled in the peacock's mouth? . . . . . How does a snake get around? And the majestic peacock? . . . . How do these creatures compare and contrast, the celestial peacock and the earth-bound serpent? How does the god fit in? What does it all mean to you?
A harmonious union of the celestial Buddha and worldly serpent king Muchalinda. While Buddha was meditating under the bodhi tree, a great storm blew in. The Nagaraja Muchalinda emerged from his burrow, wrapped his thick coils around the Buddha to protect him from the cold wind, and enveloped Buddha with his massive hood to ward off the freezing rain.
"Two snakes coming together, facing each other, but they're one." Conan I dig the awesome skirt of interlacing rattlesnakes. This reminds me of a great Nepalese Buddha Sheltered by Muchalinda in the Art Institute of Chicago. http://www.flickr.com/photos/ancientartpodcast/7000915442/
The usual western trope of snake=evil. "The Virgin crushing the satanic serpent of heresy," although here looking more like a dragon.
Fascinating depiction of a snake in Australian rock art. A great example of natural media expressing the natural world. Check out the many videos in the Artwork Details.
Is it a snake or flowing water? Or is it both? A snake slithering across water? Reminds me of the Egyptian hieroglyphic phonetic character "N" which looks like a squiggle and represents water rapids. Is this a prototype for writing? Do the horizontal striations represent the banks of the river with a current flowing in between?
That'd be a sobering sight at the bottom of my wine cup! I love the detail of the claw clutching the snake.
Credits: All media
This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
Translate with Google
Home
Explore
Nearby
Profile