Buddhism worships a wide array of divine beings, venerated in many differing rituals and popular contexts. They range from enlightened Buddhas to regional spirits and beings adopted by Buddhists. The religion was founded by the Buddha, also named Siddhārtha Gautama or Buddha Shakyamuni, who was a spiritual teacher and religious leader who lived in India around the 5th- 4th Century BC. He is regarded as the Enlightened One who has transcended Karma and escaped the cycle of birth and rebirth. His teachings are based on his insight into the duḥkha, usually translated as “suffering”, and the end of dukkha, the state called Nibbāna or Nirvana, which is the ultimate goal of the Buddhist path, the state of non-suffering, as it also marks the end of the Samsara, the beginning state of rebirth and death into a mundane existence. Bodhisattvas are enlightened beings who are designated to become Buddhas. Buddhist religion entered China in the first centuries AD via the Silk Road, and became a dominant cult during the Tang Dynasty.
Tang Dynasty Head of Bodhisattva
A beautifully carved red sandstone head of a Bodhisattva, dating to the Chinese Tang Dynasty. The figure is presented wearing an elaborate headpiece, decorated with a lotus flower motif, covering his high top-knot. Facial features, such the almond shaped-eyes, nose and mouth, appear finely and naturalistically rendered. The piece would have been originally part of a larger composition.
Period: Tang Dynasty
Provenance: The C. Roger Moss OBE collection. The late C. Roger Moss OBE was a renowned art collector who, throughout the years, thanks to his determination and enthusiasm, was able to create an outstanding collection of artworks, most prominently from China and the Orient, but also from other cultures. His great love for ancient cultures and study for interesting and unusual artefacts informs his collection.
Condition: Extremely fine fragment, mounted on a custom-made stand.