Head of a Buddha

Historical period(s)
Lan Na period, ca. 1500
H x W x D: 32.1 x 21.3 x 20.9 cm (12 5/8 x 8 3/8 x 8 1/4 in)
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Metalwork, Sculpture

Buddhist sculpture

Buddha, Buddhism, casting, Lan Na period (1251 - 1774), Thailand, ushnisha
Provenance research underway.

In 1909, Charles Lang Freer purchased this and three other bronze heads of the Buddha from the American Art Galleries in New York City (F1909.48-51). Remarkably different in style, the heads reveal the range of artistic possibilities within the strictures of a single iconographic form. The gentle face of this Buddha is serene and contemplative, emphasizing his meditative focus. His gaze is down and inward, and his lips smile subtly. The snail shell curls over his bulbous cranial protuberance (ushnisha), along with his pierced elongated ears, mark him as a Buddha. Thailand's Buddhist art is remarkable for the way the image of the Buddha transforms subtly across centuries of casting in bronze.

Collection Area(s)
South Asian and Himalayan Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
F|S Southeast Asia
CC0 - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

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