Seated Buddha, China, Shanxi or Henan province, approx. 1500-1600, Ming dynasty (1368-1644)

313204620_1336287370474612_5019576096495706867_n

Seated Buddha, China, Shanxi or Henan province, approx. 1500-1600, Ming dynasty (1368-1644). Stoneware with multicolor glazes. H. 146 cm x W. 69.8 cm x D. 61 cm (overall). The Avery Brundage Collection, B60P139. © Asian Art Museum Chong-Moon Lee Center for Asian Art and Culture.

This large sculpture is the product of a ceramics industry in northern China that began producing sculpture more than a thousand years ago. By the time this piece was produced, the technology had been sufficiently developed for artisans to produce large and complex works. This sculpture is made of five large sections that fit precisely to one another. In addition, individual sections, such as the lotus pedestal, are made up of multiple pieces that were assembled prior to the second firing. Such elaborate sculptures were in demand during the late Ming dynasty, as many Chinese turned to Buddhism to seek refuge from political and economic turmoil.