Gandharan / Buddha / Kushan period, late 2nd-early 3rd centuryGandharan
Kushan period, late 2nd-early 3rd century

View Larger Image

View Full Catalog Record Below

This image is one of over 108,000 from the AMICA Library (formerly The Art Museum Image Consortium Library- The AMICO Library™), a growing online collection of high-quality, digital art images from over 20 museums around the world. offers subscriptions to this collection, the finest art image database available on the internet. EVERY image has full curatorial text and can be studied in depth by zooming into the smallest details from within the Image Workspace.
Preview the AMICA Library™ Public Collection in Luna Browser Now

  • Cultures and time periods represented range from contemporary art, to ancient Greek, Roman, and Egyptian works.
  • Types of works include paintings, drawings, watercolors, sculptures, costumes, jewelry, furniture, prints, photographs, textiles, decorative art, books and manuscripts.

Gain access to this incredible resource through either a monthly or a yearly subscription and search the entire collection from your desktop, compare multiple images side by side and zoom into the minute details of the images. Visit for more information on the collection, click on the link below the revolving thumbnail to the right, or email us at .

Creator Nationality: Asian; Indian Sub-Continent; Indian
Creator Dates/Places: Gandharan
Creator Active Place: Gandharan
Creator Name-CRT: Gandharan
Title: Buddha
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 167
Creation End Date: 233
Creation Date: Kushan period, late 2nd-early 3rd century
Creation Place: Pakistan, Gandhara area
Object Type: Sculpture
Materials and Techniques: Phyllite
Dimensions: H. 72 in. (182.9 cm)
AMICA Contributor: Asia Society
Owner Location: New York, New York, USA
ID Number: 1979.003
Credit Line: Asia Society: The Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection
Context: Most of the earliest known images of Buddhas and other Buddhist deities were produced in northwest India during the Kushan period about six hundred years after the religion was founded. The Kushans descendants of nomads from various parts of Central Asia had settled in parts of Bactria to the northwest of India and ultimately used this stronghold to form an empire that included eastern Parthia the Kabul Valley the Gandhara region of present-day Pakistan and parts of Kashmir and northern India. Although the exact dates of the Kushan period remain controversial it is now generally agreed that the 1st through 3rd centuries CE encompass the height of their rule.

There were two major centers of Kushan culture each with its distinctive style: art from the region of Gandhara shows the impact of Hellenistic and Roman sculpture owing in part to the sustained effect of Alexander the Great in that part of the world while art from the city of Mathura in Uttar Pradesh displays a traditional Indian aesthetic. Whereas Gandharan art had a strong influence on early Buddhist art in Central Asia and is also briefly reflected in the earliest Chinese Buddhist material Mathuran art had a more profound impact on the development of Buddhist art in India and Southeast Asia.

This large standing Buddha which can be dated to the late 2nd or early 3rd century typifies the art of Gandhara. The Buddha wears the traditional garments of an Indian monk: a long cloth known as a dhoti wrapped around the waist is covered by a large shawl draped over his shoulders a portion of which is held in his left hand. The hem of the skirtlike dhoti is lower than that of the shawl helping to distinguish the two garments. Western prototypes are evident in the series of thick heavy folds that obscure the underlying physique as well as the treatment of the Buddha's facial features and his wavy hair. Similarly his posture with a slight sway to the right is reminiscent of the contrapposto p
Related Document Description: Asia Society. Handbook of the Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection. New York: Asia Society, [1981], p. 8.
Related Document Description: Newman, Richard. The Stone Sculpture of India: A Study of the Materials Used by Indian Sculptors from ca. 2nd Century B.C. to the 16th Century. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Art Museums, Center for Conservation and Technical Studies, 1984, pp. 57, 58, 82, 84.
AMICA ID: ASIA.1979.003
AMICA Library Year: 1998
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright, Asia Society

AMICA PUBLIC RIGHTS: a) Access to the materials is granted for personal and non-commercial use. b) A full educational license for non-commercial use is available from Cartography Associates at c) Licensed users may continue their examination of additional materials provided by Cartography Associates, and d) commercial rights are available from the rights holder.

Home | Subscribe | Preview | Benefits | About | Help | Contact
Copyright © 2007 Cartography Associates.
All rights reserved.