Crossroads of Civilization || Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

Head of the Buddha

A very early image of the Buddha, this serenely beautiful head was once framed by a halo and joined to a complete figure. The Buddha’s downward gaze conveys that he is meditating. His cranial bump (ushnisha), which signifies transcendent wisdom, and his forehead dot (urna) are marks of his perfected nature. The sculpture was created for a monastic complex in ancient Gandhara, a region that now spans Pakistan and Afghanistan. In the third century, Gandhara was a crossroads that united the Greco-Roman world with India, and the Buddha’s wavy hair recalls classical images of Apollo.

Pakistan (ancient Gandhara)
3rd century
Schist


Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

April 25th, 2017

2 thoughts on “Crossroads of Civilization || Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

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