The Buddha and the Sacred Site

Buddha Shakyamuni

  • 4
  • Tibet
  • 11th century
  • Copper alloy with copper overlay and inlays of silver
  • H. 5 5/8 in. (14.3 cm)
  • Asia Society, New York: Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection, 1979.89
  • Bodh Gaya
Find it on the Interactive Map

This statue of the Buddha Shakyamuni performing the earth-touching gesture is based on Pala period (8th–12th century) images from northeastern India. The patterned cushion on which the Buddha sits is a replication of the sacred model found at the Mahabodhi Temple at Bodh Gaya. Tibetan craftsmen were exposed to the Pala style through portable sculpture brought from India to Tibet by pilgrims and other travelers, as well as through accounts of Tibetan pilgrims who visited areas of India where Pala styles prevailed.

PHOTO CREDIT: Asia Society, New York

©2009 Asia Society 725 Park Avenue at 70th Street New York, NY 10021: