Seated luohan (arhat) in a grotto
Not on view
A luohan, (arhat, in Sanskrit) is a Buddhist sage who has achieved enlightenment. Groups of sixteen, eighteen, and five-hundred luohans were worshipped in China, where they were a common theme in painting and the decorative arts. The beautifully engraved inscription on this sculpture identifies the luohan as Kanaka, the eighth in the set of sixteen, and explains that the Qianlong emperor had this sculpture made as part of a set of sixteen images for a shrine in the palace.
This artwork is meant to be viewed from right to left. Scroll left to view more.