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Burmese Arakan Bronze Crowned Buddha, 17th Century



A gorgeous and refined Burmese crowned and adorned seated bronze Buddha, Kingdom of Arakan, Mrauk-U period, 17th century. The Buddha is portrayed seated in padmasana upon a high double lotus pedestal, hands in dhyana mudra, a ritual vessel resting in his upturned palms. He is festooned with jewelry – armlets, bracelets, anklets, a double necklace, a jeweled belt, and large earrings. His hair done up in a high chignon, covering the ushnisha and topped by a stupa shaped finial. The Buddha wears a large five pointed crown tied with ribbons that flare dramatically behind either ear, and a thin scarf wrapped around his shoulders that billows around him. The diaphanous fabric of his garment spread out gracefully in front of him. This sculpture is reminiscent of Ming Dynasty Sino-Tibetan prototypes. The Buddha’s rounded, cherubic face is a direct reflection of Ming Dynasty images, while the double lotus base, with its beautifully cast petals and well defined beaded bands, finds complements in Sino-Tibetan bronzes of this period. The applied lacquer patina of rich greens and deep browns also has precedence in Ming Dynasty bronze figures. In Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism, there would be no mistaking this figure - crowned and adorned, holding a sacred pot full of the elixir of life - as Amitayus, the Buddha of Longevity. However, in Theravada Buddhism, which the Kingdom of Arakan adhered to, there is no counterpart. He is simply a crowned Buddha. The IDEA and image of the crowned Buddha was an important reinforcement of the belief in the divinity of kings, as well as a reminder of Buddha’s role in the temporal realm. Arakan sat at a crossroads of the Buddhist world, connecting India, China, Ceylon and Southeast Asia, so it is not totally surprising to find images seemingly at odds with accepted iconography, given the flow of people, goods, ideas, art and culture that passed through the kingdom during that period. Provenance: Summers Family Collection, purchased in Yangon, 1974 For a similar, slightly earlier example, see the Crowned Buddha at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Australia, accession number 35.2000.


  • Dimensions
    Height: 20.75 in. (52.71 cm)Width: 11.5 in. (29.21 cm)Depth: 7.5 in. (19.05 cm)
  • Materials and Techniques
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
    17th Century
  • Condition
    Wear consistent with age and use. The base somewhat rough. Two small patches of white paint to the back of the stature, as seen in photos.
  • Seller Location
    Austin, TX
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU894714282841

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    $175 Standard Shipping
    to anywhere in the world, arrives in 3-5 weeks.
    We recommend this shipping type based on item size, type and fragility.
    Ships From: Austin, TX
  • Return Policy

    A return for this item may be initiated within 7 days of delivery.

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About the Seller
5 / 5
Located in Austin, TX

Founded in 2001, Lotus Gallery offers a carefully curated selection of furniture, jewelry, sculpture and works of art spanning millennia, continents and cultures. Although it seeks out beauty in all its forms, they specialize in Asian antiquities, especially Chinese pieces from the Han and Tang dynasties and chinoiserie. Based in Austi...

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Established in 2001
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Typical response time: 2 hours
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