Object Record

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Catalog number 2003.3.1
Title Muchalinda Buddha
Object Name Statue, Religious
Description This sculpted Muchalinda Buddha is an icon that records the Enlightenment at Bodh Gaya, one of the eight major events in the life of Buddha. Once painted with lacquer, the sculpture represents the artistic tradition of Southeast Asia. This is the region where Theravada Buddhism prevailed, with its focus upon the historical Buddha and his former incarnations.

Positioned frontally, the Buddha sits cross-legged in a posture of meditation on bulging snake coils with honeycomb scales. Buddha is attired in the vestments of a monk, his sash and robe defined by curving double lines. His strongly structured face, rendered with a tranquil but profound expression, features a broad forehead, wide, square jaw, and delicate treatment of the eyes, nose, and lips. Attenuated serpent necks protrude from behind his upper torso in a symmetrical, pyramidal composition that forms a hood which shelters the Buddha. Conical rows of small tight curls collimate the hairline and cranial protuberance. The dignified ethos of the figure, however, is in stark contrast to the austerity of the Buddha's pose and the hieratic act of meditating continuously for forty days and nights, as legend tells.

Citation: Extract taken from the exhibition catalogue "The Light of Infinite Wisdom: Asian Art from the Godwin-Ternbach Museum and Other Collections", October 15-December 20, 2003, pp. 12-13.
Medium/Material Sandstone with traces of laquer and gilding
Dimensions H-32.5 W-18 D-8.5 inches
Year Range from 1100
Year Range to 1299
Search Terms Asian
South and Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia
12th century AD
13th century AD
Exhibition and Publication History * "The Light of Infinite Wisdom: Asian Art from the Godwin-Ternbach Museum and Other Collections," A. Winter, X. Lin, Curators, G-TM, October 15-December 20, 2003, Catalogue entry: pp. 12-13.
Culture Thai