Previous Image | Asia Week New York | Next Image

Kapoor Galleries Inc.

Buddha
Gandhara
2nd / 3rd century
Schist
Height: 16 in

Buddha, meaning awakened or enlightened one, was born Siddhartha Gautama to the Sakya clan (circa 563 – 483 B.C.). He is said to have been born in Lumbini, modern day Nepal, in a grove beneath a Shal tree. Destined by birth to life as a prince, it is said that the future Buddha believed material wealth was not the ultimate goal in life. After departing from his palace, where he was sheltered from the harsh realities of common life such as disease, suffering and aging, Siddhartha renounced his princely life and pursued a mendicant’s life, begging for alms. Not feeling fulfilled spiritually Siddhartha elevated his austerities and practiced selfmortification, subsisting on just a leaf or nut each day as his only nourishment. He began to reconsider his path of self-mortification and upon reflection entered a state of supreme meditative bliss, known as dhyana.

This very finely carved sculpture depicts the Buddha seated in a meditative posture, atop a panel decorated by a geometrically separated floral design. He is draped in an elegantly pleated sanghati covering both shoulders hiding the well modeled physique underneath. His hands are in dhyana mudra, the meditative gesture, resting in his lap. The rhythmic folds of the robe complement the wavy strands of hair that are gathered in a finely wound usnisa (top knot). His face has a serene expression set against the circular nimbus, an indication of his enlightened status.

Provenance: Christie’s NY · September 19, 2002 · Lot 10

all text, images Kapoor Galleries Inc.

 

Previous Image | Asia Week New York | Next Image