The youthful Krishna is depicted here as the flute-playing cowherd, Venugopala. The melodious lure of his flute was irresistible to his female admirers, the gopis, who symbolize the human soul. While stylistically close to bronze sculpture of the region, by using stone the artist has focused on the simplicity and purity of form; compare with a bronze figure in the Catherine and Lewis J. Burger Collection, see P. Pal (ed.), Dancing to the Flute, 1997, p. 84, fig. 36b.