Overall: 22.5 x 7.2 x 7.2 cm (8 7/8 x 2 13/16 x 2 13/16 in.)
John L. Severance Fund 1998.79
Small statues like this work were designed to be portable, rather than to be permanently housed in a Buddhist temple.
This small sculpture shows Amita, the Buddha of the Western Paradise and the focus of the Pure Land sect of Buddhism, which was popular across East Asia, including Korea. Amita is recognizable from its standing, frontal pose, its right hand raised palm out in a gesture that reassures viewers to have no fear. The aesthetics of the Silla period are reflected in the sculpture’s modest size, appropriate for an aristocrat’s private worship, and the use of gilt-bronze, exemplifying the popularity of gold at the time.
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