Buddha of the Western Paradise (Amida Nyorai)

DATE:
c. 1175–1200
MATERIAL AND TECHNIQUE:
Wood, gilded lacquer
CLASSIFICATION:
Sculpture
DIMENSIONS:
34 1/4 × 11 × 10 in. (87 × 27.94 × 25.4 cm) Buddha: 30 1/2 × 9 1/2 × 7 1/4 in. (77.47 × 24.13 × 18.42 cm) Base: 4 3/4 × 11 × 10 in. (12.07 × 27.94 × 25.4 cm)
DEPARTMENT:
Arts of Asia
LOCATION:
Arts of Asia - Japan, Level 3
CREDIT LINE:
Dallas Museum of Art, The Art Museum League Fund
OBJECT NUMBER:
1978.26.A-B

General Description

The gilt wooden statue of Amida, the Buddha of Light who welcomed souls to the Western Paradise, or Pure Land, reflects the gentle, consoling character of Buddhism that developed during the Fujiwara period. The Buddha Amida, and the promise of rebirth, were popularized by the holy man Eshin Sozu during the period of Fujiwara influence, characterized by a sense of idealism and refinement. The delicate small-featured figure, depicted with the quiet grace of late Fujiwara style, presents the promise of peace. Yet the work is unmistakably Japanese, for in place of the soft, relaxed forms of Chinese Buddhist sculpture it has a Japanese taut, upright outline.

Drawn from

  • Anne R. Bromberg, Dallas Museum of Art: Selected Works (Dallas, TX: Dallas Museum of Art, 1983), 86.

  • Benjamin Rowland, The Evolution of the Buddha Image (New York: Asia Society, dist. by Harry N. Abrams, 1963), 33-35.

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