The revered Vishnu is shown here as Vishvarupa, one of his many manifestations. In this cosmic form, Vishnu encapsulates the universe; he is all things at once, including the only truth and the only reality. One half of the picture presents Vishvarupa enclosed within the cosmic egg, the source of creation. Having emerged from the egg, in the other half of the painting the omnipotent god is seated in a pose of preaching, surveying the world he has brought into being.
Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2011
From: Asian gallery extended display label