Gilt Bronze Crowned Buddha, Rattanakosin-Style
height: 16.5cm, width: 12.8cm
This finely-cast image of the Buddha dressed as a prince with a crown, princely jewellery and robes, sits cross-legged on a tiered throne. The image’s right hand is in the earth-touching (bhumisparsha mudra) gesture. It is of cast bronze and has been gilded over red and black lacquer undercoats.
An almost identical crowned Buddha is in the State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg, and illustrated in Hermitage (1997, p. 150).
Most Buddha images have a cranial protuberance but as with the case with the example here, those of the second-half of the nineteenth century sometimes lack them. This practice arose in the reign of King Rama IV(1851-1868) during which the Kingdom became more exposed to European influence and there was an attempt to humanise the Buddha.
This Buddha image, dressed as a prince, is a companion piece to
, which shows the Buddha dressed as a monk. The two show a nice progression from the Buddha’s early days as a member of a local royal family to that of an aesthetic.
The image is in fine condition and is without any losses to the casting.
Hermitage, Siamese Art of the 14th-19th Centuries in the Hermitage, Slavia Art Books, 2007.
Doris Duke: The Southeast Asian Art Collection, The Foundation for Southeast Asian Art and Culture, 2003.
Inventory no.: 1648