Origin: Thailand, Circa: early 1900S’
H 12 in.(30cm), W 32 in.(81cm), D 9 in.(23cm)
As a popular depiction of the Buddha, the Sleeping Buddha is the evocation of the moment of death as Guatama Shakyamuni, entered Nirvana. Nirvana in Sanskrit has multiple meanings including “perfect stillness” liberation, tranquil extinction and the extinction of individual existence. Inferred here is conscious transmigration of the soul, which is no longer, bound by samskaras.
Unlike many contemporary carving, this antique Siam lacquer gilt wood statue from the early 1900s conveys a studied elegance endowed beauty. The ushnisha is beautifully formed into a round dome. Finely detailed hair it indicates the integrity of the carvingr. An elegant inlay of tiny mirrors provides a delicate crown and indicates the open third eye of the Buddha. The hands communicate in graceful curves and the feet are life-like and are nearly in movement in their curvature and position. The Buddha’s countenance communicates a lively directness in the eyes. The lips are full; the nose broad and there is an elegant arch to the cheekbones. The lacquer base of the entire statue dusted with remnants of gold gilt has a chromatic richness. The folds of the robes of this Buddha are particularly beautiful with symmetrical scrolling in the front reminiscent of ocean waves. In the back, there is an stylized, elegant pleating of the robes. Anthropomorphic Buddhist statues have been crafted in Siam at least since the 6th century BCE.