Pavilions of a Buddhist Paradise

In the Crawford catalogue, “Chinese Calligraphy and Painting” (p. 51), Max Loehr wrote about the painting:

The fragment depicts a curious architectural assemblage surrounding a checker-paved court. At the left side rise, one behind the other in close juxtaposition, a small porch and two open pavilions on raised platforms. Behind the pavilions runs a portico which closes on the scene to the rear and supports a pillared kiosk on a square platform hovering above the portico. The kiosk is enclosed by a railing, as are the structures on the ground. The roofs are of one type throughout, hipped and with straight caves in Tang fashion. They are rendered in a disjointed perspective that contrasts with the neat and seemingly precise design of the architectural details. In the porchlike structure in front of the buildings appears the lonely figure of a seated Buddha in the meditative pose.

Historical period(s)
Song dynasty, possibly 10th century
Medium
Hanging scroll; ink and color on silk
Dimensions
H x W (image): 156.5 x 65.3 cm (61 5/8 x 25 11/16 in)
Geography
China
Credit Line
Gift of John M. Crawford, Jr.
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1984.41
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Painting
Type

Hanging scroll

Keywords
architecture, Buddhism, China, pavilion, Song dynasty (960 - 1279), Tushita, WWII-era provenance
Provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Description

In the Crawford catalogue, "Chinese Calligraphy and Painting" (p. 51), Max Loehr wrote about the painting:

The fragment depicts a curious architectural assemblage surrounding a checker-paved court. At the left side rise, one behind the other in close juxtaposition, a small porch and two open pavilions on raised platforms. Behind the pavilions runs a portico which closes on the scene to the rear and supports a pillared kiosk on a square platform hovering above the portico. The kiosk is enclosed by a railing, as are the structures on the ground. The roofs are of one type throughout, hipped and with straight caves in Tang fashion. They are rendered in a disjointed perspective that contrasts with the neat and seemingly precise design of the architectural details. In the porchlike structure in front of the buildings appears the lonely figure of a seated Buddha in the meditative pose.

Marking(s)

Four characters, "Chin-kuang-ming-ssu" (Monastary of Golden Splendor), in ink at the lower left of the painting. These seem to have been "written" to indcate ownership by a monastary of that name.

There are three collector's seals affixed to the painting, all belonging to John M. Crawford.

Published References
  • Max Loehr, Laurence Sickman, Lien-sheng Yang. Chinese Painting and Calligraphy from the Collection of John M. Crawford Jr.: At the Victoria and Albert Museum, 17 June to 1 August 1965. Exh. cat. London, June 17 - August 1, 1965. p. 51.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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