Michael Backman Ltd - Home

Large Kandyan Period Cast Brass Standing Buddha
Sri Lanka
18th century

height without stand (32cm), with stand: 38cm

This fine example of a Kandyan-style standing Buddha is finely cast in brass. It is typically Kandyan in some respects but it is also unusual for its height - it is
relatively large - and also because the figure is unusually plump.

The stylised pose with its broad shoulders, and the pear-shaped, prominent, flaming
unisha or sirispata (crown protuberance) that rises from his head are
characteristic of Kandyan sculptures of the 18th century. Certain standards employed in the preparation of wax models (used in casting) contributed to this
stylistic consistency.

The robes or
civara are long and folded in a typical way for a Kandyan 18th century standing depiction of the Buddha. They are decorated with deep, wavy
lines, front and back.

The Buddha stands with both hands held aloft in a pose that is modelled after the monumental standing Buddha at Avukana.

The feet are rectangular, the right nipple is exposed, the shoulders remarkably broad and square, the face rounded with downcast eyes, a wide nose and thin
eyebrows, and the head is decorated with tight curls - all these are typical of the 18th century Kandyan style.

The images shows traces of polychrome and lacquer decoration. Remnants are visible most particularly in the wavy lines engraved on the robes.

The image is in fine condition.  There is some age-related mottling to the brass here and there. It has been mounted on a wooden stand.

Coomaraswamy, A.K.,
Bronzes from Ceylon, Chiefly in the Colombo Museum, Colombo Museum, 1914 (reprinted 1988).
Coomaraswamy, A.K.,
Mediaeval Sinhalese Art, Pantheon Books, 1956 reprint of the 1908 edition.
Phoenix Art Museum,
Guardian of the Flame: Art of Sri Lanka, Phoenix Art Museum, 2003.
De Silva, P.H.D.H.,
A Catalogue of Antiquities and Other Cultural Objects from Sri Lanka (Ceylon) Abroad, National Museums of Sri Lanka, 1975.

private collection, UK. The previous owner built up a collection of Buddha images mostly from old UK colonial sources, and did so over a long lifetime.

Inventory no.: 4584

This Item is available - Ask about this item

Click here to see more Buddhas & related images, and here to see more antique items from Sri Lanka.