H. 17 3/4 in. (45.1 cm); W. 5 3/4 in. (14.6 cm); D. 2 7/8 in. (7.3 cm)
Samuel Eilenberg Collection, Ex Coll.: Columbia University, Purchase, Lila Acheson Wallace Gift, 1987
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 245
This bodhisattva of compassion is represented as an ascetic, dressed in a waistcloth secured with a cord, the details incised into the contours of his torso. He has a flayed antelope skin (ajina) across his left shoulder, an attribute of the earliest representations of this bodhisattva in early seventh-century northern India. The cult of Avalokiteshvara assumed special importance in Mahayana Buddhism during this period. Soon after its development in India, it was shared with Southeast Asian practitioners.