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Title

Figure of Buddha


Artists

Unknown Artist


About

The Buddha was originally shown only by symbols, such as the stupa, the wheel of the Doctrine or a footprint. It was the Gandhara area of northwest India that gave rise to the first representations of the Buddha in human form in the 2nd century BCE. This standing figure shows a Greco-Roman influence in its classical facial features and the drapery-like folds of the robe. The left hand grasps a corner of the robe while the right hand would have faced palm out and fingers upright in the 'abhaya mudra' (gesture of fearlessness). Typical of the Gandhar Buddha is the naturalistic hairstyle, the rounded cranial bump or ushnisha (indicating wisdom), and the spiral between the eyebrows (urna) signifying spiral insight.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW, August 1995


Details


Place where the work was made

Swat Valley Ancient Gandhara Pakistan


Date

2nd century


Media category

Sculpture


Materials used

grey schist


Dimensions

109.0 x 37.0 x 17.0 cm


Signature & date

Not signed. Not dated.


Credit

Gift of Josef and Regina Neumann 1986


Accession number

85.1986



Shown in 2 exhibitions

Exhibition history


Referenced in 2 publications

Bibliography


Jackie Menzies, Asian Collection Handbook, Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Introduction', pg. 9-17, Sydney, 1990, 10, 11 (illus.).

Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Buddhist Art', Sydney, 2003, 28 (colour illus.).