VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Stele with the Buddha Shakyamuni
RCH 111
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

The reverse side of the stele shows a typical group of Buddhist redemptory figures. Buddha Shakyamuni, the historical founder of the religion, is seated in the centre - much larger than the figures that accompany him - in a state of profound meditation. With his hand gestures he invites the faithful to follow his example. In a lengthy inscription on the reverse side of the stele, the names of 105 donors are mentioned. They joined forces to finance this cult image and thus perform a worthy deed.

History of the Object
The doctrine of Buddhism reached China in the first century AD. By the 6th century the new religion had asserted itself in all classes of society. Innumerable figures, steles and temples were erected.

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Type
Sculpture 
Materials
Limestone 
Measurements
Width 88 cm. Height 19.5 cm. Length 103.5 cm.  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
Henan 
Geography
China 
Time period
AD 6th century ~ AD 6th century 
Creation date
6th Century; 536 Eastern Wei Dynasty 
Function
Sculpture 
Acquisition
C.T. Loo, Paris (1920-1924); Eduard von der Heydt Collection (from 1924) 
Copyright
Museum Rietberg Zürich 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
Museum Rietberg Zürich 
Museum
Museum Rietberg 
Credit line
Museum Rietberg Zürich, Gift Eduard von der Heydt 

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