VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Buddha
MVK 126004
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

This is a fine example of a 2nd-3rd century Seated Buddha schist stone, from the Gandharan region of NW India and Afghanistan

History of the Object
Gandhara was a Buddhist kingdom situated between the lower Kabul valley in present day Afghanistan, which flourished under the rule of the Bactrian Greeks from the 2nd century BC and later under the Kushanas, a Scythian tribe from Central Asia. It is particularly noted as a centre for Buddhist sculpture, strongly under the influence of the Hellenic style. Some of the earliest representations of the Buddha are said to have been produced in the Gandhara region which ceased to exist as an independent kingdom in the 7th century AD. This Buddha image shows him with his arms crossed before his chest in the dharmachakra mudra. He wears flowing robes draped across his left shoulder, leaving the right shoulder bare. His face has an inward looking meditative expression, defined by delicately rendered, semi-closed eyes. Buddha's wavy hair rises to a domed topknot, and a round nimbus frames his face. The sensitively rendered face convincingly conveys the artist's strong mastery over the human anatomy. Pursuing Greek models further, the Gandhara sculptors preferred voluminous drapery with heavy pleats for their images.

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Type
Sculpture 
Materials
Schist stone 
Measurements
Width 50 cm Height 87 cm  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
Afghanistan; India; Gandhara 
Geography
Afghanistan 
Time period
AD 2nd century ~ AD 3rd century 
Creation date
2nd Century -3rd Century 
Function
worship 
Acquisition
Given as a gift to the Wien Museum in 1937 by the Antikensammlung of the Kunsthistorische 
Copyright
 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
 
Museum
Weltmuseum Wien 
Credit line
 

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