This small bronze figure is a composition of Krishna and his foster mother Yasodha.
Yashoda was a gopi or milkmaid and the wife of the cowherd Nanda. She became the foster mother of Krishna (the eighth incarnation of the Hindu god Vishnu) in order to prevent Krishna’s murder by King Kamsa.
Yasodha is depicted standing in the typical pose of a woman with a child on her hip. Yasodha’s weight is on her left leg to support the infant Krishna on her left hip. Her left arm wraps around the child. Yasodha is holding a lotus in her right hand, giving her the status of divinity.
Yasodha is wearing armlets, bracelets, earrings and necklaces – as does the otherwise naked infant Krishna whose hair is tied in a pinched top-knot.
According to T A G Rao, Elements of Hindu Iconography, this is not one of the forms described in Sanskrit texts available.
Other forms of Yasodha Krishna include Yasodha sitting with Krishna in her lap and Yasodha suckling Krishna.
This is more of a folk bronze and may not have been used in worship. This bronze is quite thin and it is about 12.5 cm in height.
According to one author, this type of bronze is from Tamil Nadu as coiffure of Yasodha is combed and tied to the left. Probably the coiffure is the only thing helping that attribution.
In his book, Bronzes of South India, P R Srinivasan refers to three similar Yasodha Krishna. All the three pieces are with Madras (Chennai) Museum and are dated to early 19th century.