- Gallery Text
Among the most serene images of the Buddha ever carved, this white marble sculpture features the fleshy oval face, with small eyes and short nose, that became a hallmark of the style of the Northern Qi dynasty, which controlled northern China in the late sixth century and heavily patronized Buddhism. The plump face and wavy hair, and the circular design on the head, anticipate the Tang dynasty style of a century later. Although the small, half-closed eyes suggest that the Buddha is lost in meditation, painted details would have given them a particular focus, so that the Buddha would have seemed more engaged with the world. In addition, a large-scale sculpture of this type would have been placed slightly above the viewer, so that the Buddha would appear to look down benevolently into the raised gaze of the supplicant.
- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
- Head of a Buddha
- Work Type
- head, sculpture
- 550 - 577
- Creation Place: East Asia, China, Hebei province
- Northern Qi, 550-577
- Persistent Link
Level 1, Room 1610, Buddhist Sculpture, Buddhism and Early East Asian Buddhist Art
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- Physical Descriptions
- White marble. From Dingzhou, Hebei province.
- H. 36 x W. 25 x D. 21.5 cm (14 3/16 x 9 13/16 x 8 7/16 in.)
- Grenville L. Winthrop, New York (by 1943), bequest; to Fogg Art Museum, 1943.
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Bequest of Grenville L. Winthrop
- Accession Year
- Object Number
- Asian and Mediterranean Art
- THIS WORK MAY NOT BE LENT BY THE TERMS OF ITS ACQUISITION TO THE HARVARD ART MUSEUMS.
- The Harvard Art Museums encourage the use of images found on this website for personal, noncommercial use, including educational and scholarly purposes. To request a higher resolution file of this image, please submit an online request.
- Exhibition History
32Q: 1610 Buddhist Art I, Harvard Art Museums, 11/16/2014 - 01/01/2050
- Subjects and Contexts
Google Art Project
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