“Buddha and Pedestal” from Myanmar (Burma)

While at the Crocker Museum, we strolled through the Asian galleries and found this small, but finely executed 19th century Buddha Shakyamuni (or Siddhartha Gautama, Lord Buddha). Such images are common in Bagan, Myanmar, but this one is unique in that the artist used marble for the head, hands, and feet, wood for the body, metal for the headdress, and leather for the flying scarves, along with glass inlay and lacquering. It is said that Indian King Ashoka sent Buddhist missionaries to Myanmar in the 3rd century BCE. Today the countrysides are dotted with stupas and monasteries, attesting to the importance of Buddhism in the country.

 


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