Lot 1
  • 1


10,000 - 15,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Height 3 7/8  in., 9.9 cm 
finely cast in the form of the bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara standing elegantly in tribhanga atop a hexagonal lotus base, the delicate and slender figure portrayed with the left elbow bent and holding a long willow branch, with a globular kamandalu bottle in the right, adorned in a dhoti and long scarves draped over the shoulders and arms, the downcast gaze surmounted by an elaborate headdress, the back of the head with a small loop for the attachment of a mandorla


C.T. Loo, Paris. 
Collection of Sir Percival David (1892-1964), until November 1939.
Frank Caro, successor to C.T. Loo, New York, 26th February 1953. 
Collection of Stephen Junkunc, III (d. 1978). 

Catalogue Note

This finely-cast depiction of the bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, demonstrates the movement from the stylized volumes of the Sui dynasty towards the fully rounded fleshy form of the Tang period. The figure is notable for its early adaption of the dynamic sinuous posture, with the contrapostto thrust of the hips, and elegant proportions, which continued to develop during the Tang dynasty.  Representations of Avalokitesvara during the Sui and Tang periods frequently depict the bodhisattva adorned in princely jewels and a crown, bearing a 'pure water vessel', believed to heal or bestow immortality upon worshippers, in one hand; and a willow branch, also representative of healing, in the other. 

Compare a similar Sui dynasty figure of Avalokitesvara illustrated in Matsubara Saburō, Chinese Buddhist Sculpture. A Study Based on Bronze and Stone Statues other than Works from Cave Temples, Tokyo, 1966, pl. 293. Two other examples attributed to a mature Sui style include one dated 595 in the British Museum, London, and another in the collection of Mr. Hosokawa, Tokyo, both illustrated in Hugo Munsterberg, Chinese Buddhist Bronzes, Tokyo, 1967, pls 49 and 50.