2. Head of the Buddha
H. 42 cm, W. 21 cm, D. 20 cm
Alabaster image of the Buddha’s head delicately carved with gold accents and subtle pigment.
Most Shans practice Buddhism, and are mainly engaged in agriculture. Shan Buddha images typically feature triangular faces with a wide forehead, high arched eyebrows, a pointed nose, thin lips, large ears, and some (like this one) may have slightly opened eyes.
From 1634, images of the Buddha started to surface in Ava (Inwa) and were mostly made of Alabaster. The Ushnisha are generally shaped like a cone, a thin band separates the forehead and hair, which is in tight curls. The face has pronounced thin and arched bow-shaped eyebrows, gaping nostrils, a small upper lip, wide chin and short neck. The back of the head is beautifully carved and retains the original gold and reddish colour.