The Cleveland Museum of Art

Collection Online as of December 6, 2016

Standing Buddha, c. 900

brass with silver and copper inlay, Overall: h. 98.10 cm (38 9/16 inches); Base: w. 28.20 cm (11 1/16 inches). John L. Severance Fund 1966.30

The Tibetan inscription on the pedestal identifies the owner of this stunning image as Nagaraja, a royal monk from western Tibet who was instrumental in revitalizing Buddhism in this region. Sculptures like this were the stylistic source for subsequent artistic traditions in western Tibet. The wear on the sculpture's face indicates that it was actively worshipped in Kashmir for some time before it was brought to Tibet.

The slender athletic form of the body is clearly revealed. Vestiges of pleat lines that can be traced to the toga-like robes of Greco-Roman figurines-brought centuries earlier to the Indus River region-appear like stylized waves over the torso. The areas of articulation along the borders and hems convey a sense of energy emitting from the figure. His expression is serene, with silver and copper used to animate the face. His upraised right hand indicates that his teachings lead to the freedom from all fear.

inscribed with the name of the monk who commissioned it: Lhatsun Nagaraja (active from c. 998 to 1026)

Cleveland, Ohio: The Cleveland Museum of Art; April 24-June 24, 2001. "Object in Focus: Toward a Definition of an 'Early Western' Tibetan Style."
Asia Society (10/2/2007 - 1/27/2008): "The Arts of Kashmir"

The Cleveland Museum of Art (06/28/2009 - 08/30/2009); "Streams and Mountains Without End: Asian Art and the Legacy of Sherman E. Lee at the Cleveland Museum of Art"

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