Buddha ranks among the most often depicted holy figures of the world-perhaps appearing more than Christ, a subject widely treated by Western artists. Venerated in all the nations of Asia, and even beyond, his image took form along the Silk Road, the birthplace of many schools of Buddhism. Indeed, the Buddhist religion recognizes many Buddhas representing various traditions: such as Buddhism of "the Ancient Teaching" (Theravada), "the Great Vehicle" (Mahayana) and Tantric Buddhism (Varjrayana). A figure adored by all, Buddha has been captured in every art form: sculpture, often of monumental size, like the now destroyed Buddhas of Bamyan, painting and above all in countless cave murals, such as those of Ajanta in India or Dunhuang in China.
Perfect for all those passionate about Asian art, from neophytes to Buddhists, this fascinating work invites the reader to discover or rediscover Buddha, his history, his codes, and also his innumerable faces through one thousand representations selected from among the most beautiful works held in the world's greatest museums.
Thomas William Rhys Davids was a British scholar of Indian languages and a professor at the University of London, as well as the Chair of the Comparative Religions department at the University of Manchester. He took many different approaches to his research, aiding in an excavation of ancient Indian sites and collecting manuscripts. He concentrated on studies of Theravadan Buddhism and Pali scholarship, advancing numerous ideas in writing and in lectures.
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