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Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description Carved from twelve joined pieces of wood, covered with five layers of lacquer, and then painted, this sculpture is the oldest, known surviving Chinese example of its type. In the form of Buddhism that flourished during this period of China's history, the historical Buddha Sakyamuni was one among many Enlightened Ones. He was seen to preside over this earthly realm while Buddhas enlightened in other realms preside over paradises or stood for abstract concepts and cosmological constructions. This sculpture probably depicts Amitabha, the Buddha who presides over the Western Paradise - a place where Buddhists of the period hoped to be reborn.
Date Description Narrative
4/20/1990Treatmenttechnical study; cleaned
  • Secrets of the Lacquer Buddha. Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Washington. 2017-2018.
Provenance Yamanaka & Co., New York; puchased by Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1920; by bequest to Walters Art Museum, 1931.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters, 1920

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ca. 590 (Sui)
wood with painted lacquer
Accession Number
H: 41 3/8 x W: 28 3/4 x D: 21 11/16 in. (105.1 x 73.1 x 55.1 cm)
  • China (Place of Origin)
Location Within Museum
Not On View

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