An extremely rare gilt-bronze figure of Amitabha Buddha Sui – early Tang dynasty | 隋至唐初 鎏金銅阿彌陀佛坐像
3,000,000 - 5,000,000 HKD
An extremely rare gilt-bronze figure of Amitabha Buddha
Sui – early Tang dynasty
finely cast with the eyes of the buddha depicted half-closed, indicating a state of meditation and serenity, the face framed by a pair of pendulous earlobes and a domed ushnisha, sitting cross-legged in padmasana, depicted with the right hand in abhaya mudra and the left hand gently resting on the left thigh in kataka mudra, adorned in a robe draped over both the shoulders and arm with an asymmetrical opening at the right chest
h. 11.1 cm
The figure is in very good condition, with just minor chips to three of the fingers on the right hand, general surface wear and rubbing to the gilding,
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation. The condition report is a statement of opinion only. For that reason, the condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE/BUSINESS APPLICABLE TO THE RESPECTIVE SALE.
Zondewan, Brussels, 8th April 1916.
Collection of Adolphe Stoclet (1871-1949).
Collection of Raymonde Féron-Stoclet (1897-1963).
Eskenazi, Ltd., London, March 2003.
Leigh Ashton, An Introduction to the Study of Chinese Sculpture, London, 1924, pl. XL, fig. 2.
H.F.E. Visser, Asiatic Art in Private Collections of Holland and Belgium, Amsterdam, 1948, pl. 79, no. 154.
Georges A. Salles and Daisy Lion-Goldschmidt, Collection Adophe Stoclet, Brussels, 1956, pp. 384-385.
Jacques Van Goldsenhoven, Héros et Divinités de la Chine, Brussels, 1971, pl. 71
Leopold Swergold, Thoughts on Chinese Buddhist Gilt Bronzes, Aventura, 2014, cat. no. 17.
Beatrice Chan, 'Reflection and Enlightenment: Chinese Buddhist Gilt Bronzes from the Jane and Leopold Swergold Collection at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston', Arts of Asia, January/February 2018, pp. 58-65.
Leigh Ashton，《An Introduction to the Study of Chinese Sculpture》，倫敦，1924年，圖版 XL，圖2
H.F.E. Visser，《Asiatic Art in Private Collections of Holland and Belgium》，阿姆斯特丹，1948年，圖版79，編號154
Georges A. Salles 及 Daisy Lion-Goldschmidt，《Collection Adophe Stoclet》，布魯塞爾，1956年，頁384-385
Jacques Van Goldsenhoven，《Héros et Divinités de la Chine》，布魯塞爾，1971年，圖版71
Leopold Swergold，《Thoughts on Chinese Buddhist Gilt Bronzes》，2014年，圖版17
Beatrice Chan，〈Reflection and Enlightenment: Chinese Buddhist Gilt Bronzes from the Jane and Leopold Swergold Collection at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston〉，《Arts of Asia》，2018年1至2月，頁58-65
Exhibition of Chinese Art, Municipal Museum, Amsterdam, 1925, cat. no. 99.
Cleveland Museum of Art, 1980-93 (on loan).
Eskenazi Ltd., Chinese Works of Art from the Stoclet Collection, London, 2003, cat. no. 12.
Collectors' Choice, Asia Society, New York, 2007.
Expressions of the Buddhist Faith, University of Virginia Art Museum, Charlottesville, 2010.
Reflection and Enlightenment: Chinese Buddhist Gilt Bronzes from the Jane and Leopold Swergold Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 2017-2018.
《Exhibition of Chinese Art》，阿姆斯特丹博物館，阿姆斯特丹，1925年，編號99
《Expressions of the Buddhist Faith》，維吉尼亞大學美術館，夏洛茨維爾，2010年
《Reflection and Enlightenment: Chinese Buddhist Gilt Bronzes from the Jane and Leopold Swergold Collection》，休士頓美術館，休士頓，2017-2018年
This extremely rare richly gilded figure depicts Amitabha, the Buddha of Infinite Light, who rules over the Western Paradise where the faithful are reborn on lotus blossoms. He is depicted seated with legs crossed in padmasana, eyes closed and face radiating an expression of serene meditation. His neatly cropped hair reveals the prominent ushnisha. Seated figures of the Sui dynasty are rarely found. The Sui dynasty’s brief unification of China produced a new sculptural synthesis, a majestic style of restrained elegance and controlled sensuality, which formed the basis of Tang Dynasty Buddhist sculpture. Here, the elegance of the richly gilded sculpture, which is devoid of the elaborate jewelry and exhibits a more slender face and body, suggests a Sui date.
The Sui date can also be corroborated by close comparison of the current sculpture with the figure of Amitabha at the centre of an altarpiece in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, dated to the 13th year of the Kaihuang era (AD 593). The Boston altarpiece was originally excavated in the late 19th century in the vicinity of the Zhaozhou bridge, Hebei, entered the collection of Duan Fang, and was later acquired by Mrs Walter Scott Fitz, who donated it to the museum, accession no. 22.407. Both figures share the same sensational naturalism of casting, capturing the unwavering meditative posture of the Buddha, with the same distinctive posture in abhaya mudra, and similar intricately cast treatment of the drapery.
A century ago, this figure of Amitayus was in the collection of Adolphe Stoclet (1871-1949), a Belgian industrialist, banker and famous art collector, whose villa in Brussels had been commissioned, down to the last detail, from Josef Hoffman (1870-1956), important architect and co-founder of the influential art and design cooperative, Wiener Werkstätte. It is considered the most important intact ensemble preserved from the ‘Jugendstil’ period of the early twentieth century and inscribed by UNESCO as a world heritage site. Stoclet collected Western as well as non-Western art from around the world, including many major Chinese works. The current sculpture has an illustrious publication and exhibition history, first exhibited at the Municipal Museum in Amsterdam in 1925, and extensively published since Leigh Ashton’s groundbreaking 1924 book on Chinese sculpture.
隋之斷代亦有例證，比較一尊阿彌陀佛，居一造像組正中，波士頓美術館藏，開皇十三年（593年）造，至十九世紀末於河北趙州橋附近出土，先為端方所藏，後由 Walter Scott Fitz 夫人購下，又捐予該美術館，編號22.407。對比兩尊，皆施無畏印，且衣紋相類。