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An image of Manla, the medicine Buddha by
Alternate image of Manla, the medicine Buddha by


Manla, the medicine Buddha
Place of origin
17th century-early 18th century
Media category
Materials used
gilt bronze with traces of paint

24.0 x 17.0 x 12.7 cm

Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Edward and Goldie Sternberg Chinese Art Purchase Fund 2005
Accession number
Not on display
Further information

The Buddha sits on a double lotus pedestal. In his left hand he holds a medicine bowl brimming with the elixir of long life. Extended in the gesture of charity (varada mudra), his right hand contains a myrobalan fruit, a medicinal plant found in India and other tropical countries. The offering of the myrobalan symbolises his gift of protection from illness. Manla is said to dispense spiritual medicine when properly worshipped and devotees believe that merely touching his image has curative powers.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW, September 2011

Bibliography (1)

Art Gallery of New South Wales, Art Gallery of New South Wales Annual Report 2006, Sydney, 2006, 30 (colour illus.).

Exhibition history (2)

One hundred flowers (2011), Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 01 Sep 2011–15 Jan 2012

The connoisseur and the philanthropist: 30 years of the Sternberg Collection of Chinese Art, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 31 Jan 2014–27 Apr 2014