Important Cultural PropertyBodhisattva sitting with his legs half-crossed

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  • 1 statue
  • Gold-plated bronze
  • Statue H21.8
  • Asuka period/7th century
  • Tokyo National Museum
  • N-159

This image has a child-like face with double eyelids and displays a spine. The flexible modeling and folds on the kun (skirt) look natural. It is very decorative, as can be seen from the semicircular kuyo motif (a pattern with nine circles) applied to the hem of the kun and the mountain motif on the round pedestal. It also shows elaborate carving techniques made with special nanako chisels. The Shiben (a petal on which a leaf bud is rendered) on the down-turned lotus petals on the base is represented flat, which resembles the motif on the roof tiles of Horyuji Temple during its reconstruction period. The style of this image seems similar to the style of doji (boy attendant) images.
The image, including the pedestal, is created in almost one cast and hollowed out below the hips. The upper half of the body above the hips is solid. While mold cavities are concentrated in the lower part of the pedestal, the overall casting finish is good. The right and left decorations of the three upstanding ornaments of the crown were separately made, but the right one is currently missing. A nanako chisel is used for each renjumon (a motif where raised beads are consecutively placed) and a special chisel is used to create a fukurentenmon (a double dotted motif) pattern on the hems of the kun, hanging cloth and decorations around the hips, the crease of the drapery folds and the rim of the down-turned lotus petals and round frame of the base. Gold plating remains over almost the entire image except the reverse side of the head ornaments and the back of the head. For coloring, lapis lazuli remains in the hair, vermillion (or Bengala) can be seen on the lips and black sumi lines on the eyebrows.