Description This small bronze was once part of an assembly of deities composed of about 100 figures of varying size and importance, with the central one standing for supreme truth. Such an assembly, or mandala, was the visual counterpart of an elaborate mental exercise, a sequence of meditations, or trances, leading to an enlightened state of mind. The figure belongs to a group of four that surrounded a Buddha. The lotus supported by his left hand holds a vajra-a cudgel that stands for ultimate wisdom.
Provenance Sotheby's, New York [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1990, by purchase.
Credit Museum purchase, 1990
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