Art/ Collection/ Art Object

遼 三彩羅漢像
Arhat (Luohan)

Period:
Liao dynasty (907–1125)
Date:
ca. 1000
Culture:
China
Medium:
Stoneware with three-color glaze
Dimensions:
H. 41 1/4 in. (104.8 cm)
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Frederick C. Hewitt Fund, 1921
Accession Number:
21.76
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 208
This life-size sculpture is part of a group of sixteen figures that have been known in the West since 1913. Thought to have come from a cave in Yixian, Hebei province, they represent arhats (or luohans, as they are known in China). Arhats were thought to have achieved an advanced state of spiritual development, and were revered as protectors of Buddhism.

Regarded as masterpieces of ceramic sculpture, for their size, naturalistic modeling, and the quality of their three-toned (sancai) glaze, they can be dated securely to the late tenth or eleventh century based on material discovered in 1983 at an ancient kiln site near Beijing.
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