Bodhidharma Meditating

Maker(s)
Artist: Jin Nong (1687-1763)
Historical period(s)
Qing dynasty, 1762
Medium
Ink and colors on paper
Dimensions
H x W (image): 81.6 x 26.5 cm (32 1/8 x 10 7/16 in)
Geography
China
Credit Line
Transfer from the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution
Collection
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
S1990.14
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Painting
Type

Hanging scroll

Keywords
Bodhidharma, Buddhism, China, meditation, Qing dynasty (1644 - 1911), WWII-era provenance, Zen Buddhism
Provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Label

Bodhidharma was a Buddhist teacher from south India who traveled to China around C.E. 500.  There he founded the Chan (Zen) sect of Buddhism, which stresses silent meditation and rejects the study of texts, worship of images, and ritual performances.  It is said that Bodhidharma spent nine years seated before a wall in silent meditation, a feat that provides the subject of this painting.  In old age Jin Nong lived in a Buddhist monastery, so the subject of Bodhidharma may have held strong personal appeal for him.

Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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