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Altar Frontal

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Object Number:C693
Current Location: Asia Galleries
Currently On Display
Provenience: China
Period: Northern Qi Dynasty
Date Made: Northern Qi Dynasty
Early Date: 550
Late Date: 557
Sakyamuni Buddha
Prabhutaratna Buddha
Lotus Sutra
Height: 76.2 cm
Width: 121.92 cm
Credit Line:Gift of C. T. Loo, 1928


Among the niches in this altar frontal that contain images of the Buddha, the scene at the top right is from the Lotus Sutra, a fundemental Mahayana Buddhist text. When this doctorine was preached by Sakyamuni, the Buddha of the present era, to a great assembly of celestial and earthly beings, the relics of Prabhutaratna, the Buddha of the past, arose and Prabhutaratna materialized.

The relief carving also includes an incense burner between two seated lions. The lion as a Buddhist guardian figure has been a common motif in Chinese art since the introduction of Buddhism in China.

Current & Past Exhibitions:

China Gallery (22 Feb 2017) View Objects in Exhibition
Chinese Halls (1941 - 1966) View Objects in Exhibition
Chinese Rotunda (1968 - 22 Feb 2017) View Objects in Exhibition


[Catalogue] Tsiang, Katherine R. 2010. Echoes of the past : the Buddhist cave temples of Xiangtangshan.. Chicago. The David and Alfred Smart Museum of Art, The University of Chicago. Actual Citation : Page/Fig./Plate: pg. 247 fig. 61View Objects related to this Actual Citation
[Article] Howard, Angela F. 2001. "Reconstructing the Original Location of a Group of Sculptures in the University of Pennsylvania Museum". Orientations (Hong Kong). Hong Kong. Orientations Magazine Ltd. Vol. 32. no. 2. pg. 32-39 Actual Citation : Page/Fig./Plate: 38View Objects related to this Actual Citation
[Article] Jayne, Horace H. 1941. "The Chinese Collections of The University Museum: A Handbook of the Principal Objects". The University Museum Bulletin. Philadelphia. The University Museum. Vol. 9. no. 2-3. pg. 9-50 Actual Citation : Page/Fig./Plate: Pg. 59View Objects related to this Actual Citation

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