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Buddhism along the Silk Road

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Buddha, probably Shakyamuni (Shijiamouni)

Period:
Sixteen Kingdoms period (304–439)
Date:
late 4th–early 5th century
Culture:
China
Medium:
Gilt bronze; piece-mold cast
Dimensions:
H. 6 1/2 in. (16.5 cm); W. 2 3/4 in. (7 cm); D. 1 3/8 in. (3.5 cm)
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Purchase, Arthur M. Sackler Gift, 1974
Accession Number:
1974.268.8a–c
  • Description

    Representations of the Buddha wearing a thick shawl over both shoulders and sitting atop a throne with lions to either side illustrate Chinese adaptations of images derived from the northwest region of the Indian subcontinent, particularly areas in present-day Pakistan (known as Gandhara in the ancient world). Scientific examination of this sculpture has shown that it was cast using several ceramic molds, a technique that was also used to create the ancient bronze ritual vessels on view in this gallery. By the fifth century, the lost-wax method, which may have been introduced with Buddhism, was used more often for the casting of Chinese sculptures.

  • Provenance

    Frederick M. Mayer 1898–1974 , New York (until 1974; to Christie, Manson & Woods); Mayer sale, Christie's, Manson & Woods Ltd. , June 24–5, lot 141; to Eskenazi ; [ Eskenazi Ltd. , London, 1974; sold to MMA]

  • See also
    What
    Where
    When
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
    MetPublications
61820

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