Amitabha and Kshitigarba, Unidentified Artist, Hanging scroll; ink and color on silk, Korea

아미타불과 지장보살도 고려
阿彌陀佛・地藏菩薩圖 高麗
Amitabha and Kshitigarba

Unidentified Artist
Goryeo dynasty (918–1392)
first half of the 14th century
Hanging scroll; ink and color on silk
Image: 37 1/4 × 21 7/8 in. (94.6 × 55.6 cm)
Overall with mounting: 72 3/8 × 29 5/8 in. (183.8 × 75.2 cm)
Overall with knobs: 72 3/8 × 31 3/4 in. (183.8 × 80.6 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1913
Accession Number:
Not on view
The combination of the Amitabha Buddha (Korean: Amita) and the bodhisattva Kshitigarbha (Korean: Jijang)—on the right and left, respectively, standing under a canopy—is the only known example of this iconography in Goryeo Buddhist painting. A more typical composition features these two figures with the bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara (Korean: Gwaneum), forming a triad in which Amitabha is the central deity, or just the two bodhisattvas. Both deities in this painting enjoyed a strong following during the Goryeo dynasty due to the popularity of Pure Land Buddhism. Amitabha Buddha offered the promise of easy salvation and entry into the Western Paradise; Kshitigarbha provided guidance and redemption in death and the afterlife.

Buddhist paintings of the Goryeo dynasty were renowned for their delicacy, refinement, and exquisitely rendered gold-painted designs. Pigments were applied to the front and back of the silk, intensifying their hues and luminosity (though some have faded from exposure to light over time).
Garrett Chatfield Pier , New York (purchased in Japan; 1913, sold to MMA)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Arts of Korea," June 7, 1998–January 24, 1999.

Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. "Goryeo Dynasty: Korea's Age of Enlightenment, 918–1392," October 18, 2003–January 11, 2004.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Arts of Korea," January 14, 2005–October 29, 2006.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Buddhist Paintings from the Koryō Dynasty (918–1392)," May 8, 2007–October 22, 2007.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Art of Korea: Buddhism and Buddhist Art," December 9, 2011–June 3, 2012.

Seoul. National Museum of Korea. "Korean Art Collections in the United States," June 4, 2012–August 5, 2012.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Korea: 100 Years of Collecting at the Met," February 7, 2015–March 27, 2016.

Seoul. Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art. "Exquisite and Precious: The Splendor of Korean Art," July 2, 2015–September 13, 2015.