A carved stone torso of the Buddha Tang

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Lot 667
A carved stone torso of the Buddha
Tang

Sold for US$ 4,825 inc. premium

Asian Decorative Art

18 Dec 2019, 10:00 PST

Los Angeles

A carved stone torso of the Buddha
Tang
The figure posed in the posture of meditation with his left hand resting on his crossed legs, dressed as a monk in an undergarment secured by a knotted sash and an outer mantle falling from his shoulders, a knotted cord and counterweight attached to one corner of the mantle crossing the left shoulder and descending down the back, the lower hem falling in swag-like folds to the front of a lotus flower support with some of its flower petals still preserved on the finished back; the head and right arm of the figure now missing, but possibly carved separately to fit into two large drill holes, one fronting the right forearm and the other a vertical drill hole through the neck with smaller horizontal drill hole at the back to stabilize the insertion of the head.
12 1/2in (31.7cm) high

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    Butterfield & Butterfield, San Francisco sale 7070O, 13 December 1999, lot 6108

    Although lacking a head, arm and complete plinth, the arrangement of the drapery folds stretched in raised concentric ridges across the body and falling in symmetrical scallops across the lotus support of this fragment show the influence of a sculptural style that developed in the Buddhist cave temples at Tianlongshan, Shanxi, from about 710 to 740. See, for example, the central Buddha seated on a round plinth in caves VII, VI and XVII, illustrated in Oswald Siren, Chinese Sculpture from the Fifth to the Fourteenth Century (1998, SDI Publications), volume II, plates 487, 489 and 500. For more complete seated Buddha figures, see Matsubara Saburo, Chugoku bukkyo chokoku shiron (Tokyo, 1995), volume III, pl. 686 (Shanxi Provincial Museum: dated by inscription to Kaiyan 14th year [726]); and pl. 687-688 (Chicago Art Institute: Amida and Attendants shrine, dated by inscription to Kaiyuan 12th year [724]).
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