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Exhibitions/ Art Object

Buddha Preaching

6th century
South Asia, probably Sri Lanka
Copper alloy
H. 11 1/2 in. (29.2 cm); W. 2 3/4 in. (7 cm)
Credit Line:
Lent by National Museum, Bangkok, gift of Prince Damrong Rajanubhab (DR1)
Not on view
This sculpture is one of two Amaravati-style bronze Buddhas found in Thailand. Both are likely imports from Sri Lanka, where the Amaravati legacy of southern India continued in the monastic workshops of Anuradhapura, the first-millennium capital of Buddhist Sri Lanka. The presence of such imported models had a profound impact on image-making in the western and southern regions of Thailand. The pivotal role of Sri Lanka, both as a hub for long-distance trade and as a recognized custodian of Buddhist values, made it a natural source of inspiration and guidance for newly emerging Buddhist communities.

cat. no. 5
Found in Nakhon Ratchasima Province, northeastern Thailand

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Lost Kingdoms: Hindu-Buddhist Sculpture of Early Southeast Asia, 5th to 8th Century," April 14, 2014–July 27, 2014.

Damrong Rajanubhab, H.R.H. Prince. Monuments of the Buddha in Siam. Bangkok, 1962 [1926]: fig. 21; FAD, Guide to the National Museum, Bangkok [Phiphitthaphanthasathan hæng Chat] Bangkok: Fine Arts Dept., 1967: fig. 12; Subhadradis Diskul, Art in Thailand: A Brief History, Bangkok, 1970: 1, fig. 2; Boisselier, Jean. The Heritage of Thai Sculpture, New York: Weatherhill, 1975: fig. 35, p. 64; von Schroeder, Ulrich. Buddhist Sculptures of Sri Lanka. Hong Kong: Visual Dharma Publications, 1990: 175-176, fig. 43D; Sukchai Saising, Silpa Tawarawadi: Wattanatum Phuttasasana yoot raik rerm nai dindaing Thai [Dvaravati Art: The First Buddhist Culture in Thailand], Bangkok: 2004, (in Thai): 39-41; Dupont, P., The Archaeology of the Mons of Dvāravatī, translated with updates, additional figures and plans by Joyanto K. Sen, two volumes. Bangkok, 2006: 120-121, PL. 336-7; Chedha Tingsanchali, “Les représentations du Buddha en double vitarka mudrā”, in Dvāravatī : aux sources du bouddhisme en Thaïlande. Paris: Musée Guimet, 2009: 227; FAD, Dvaravati Art: The Early Buddhist Art of Thailand, National Museum Bangkok, 2009: 16, 20; Artisanship and aesthetic of Japan and Thailand, Fine Arts Department of Thailand, Kyushu National Museum, Fukuoka : Kyushu National Museum, 2011: 141, fig. 21