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Under the definition of Handicrafts there are multiple products. Of them the statues of gods and goddesses of Buddhism and Hinduism stand foremost.Their importance is enhanced not only because of the fact that they are hand made but also that they are made by using meticulously time-consuming traditional techniques: Lost Wax Process, Chiselling, antique finishing and so on. It has been long felt by craftsmen, dealers, collectors, and above all art connoisseurs that there was a dearth of books dealing with this subject and they all wished that there should be a book which must be authentic and reliable in subject matter and must have contained historical, cultural and religious meanings and artistic value.

Handicraft Association of Nepal turned out to be an appropriate institution to ponder over this matter and initiated dialogue with ZDH / TA for publication of a book on this subject and partial sponsorship of fund which it accepted. The task of choosing an authentic/professional writer was found to be quite
difficult. Handicraft Association of Nepal then chose for this august work Mr. Min Bahadur Shakya who has been engaging himself in the study and research work of Buddhism and Buddhist Iconography for a long time. I am glad and certain that his deep knowledge of iconography of the Buddhist as well as the Hindu pantheon will doubtlessly serve the purpose of the need of all concerned; including even those who do not fall in the above categories, but are simply general readers wishing to earn knowledge on Buddhist as well as Hindu icons. Also for scholars who come to visit this country time and again for their research work on Buddhism of the Greater Vehicle and its iconography this, this illustrious book will be a help. I express my heartfelt thanks to ZDH / TA and its Resident Representative, Mr. Harihar Subedi for their substantial financial support and valuable suggestions, without which the publication could not have materialized.




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