Buddhist manuscript covers (a pair)

Details

  • Title : Buddhist manuscript covers (a pair)
  • Year : 18th century
  • Classification : Manuscript Painting
  • Medium : Opaque watercolour on wood
  • Dimension : 4 in. x 15 1/8 in. (10.16 cm x 38.42 cm)
  • Accession No : 1990.167.a-b
  • Country/ Geo-location : NEPAL
  • Museum : San Diego Museum of Art
  • Credit Line : Edwin Binney 3rd Collection
  • Provenance : (1) Doris Wiener Gallery, New York, New York ( - November 13, 1975 ) (2) Edwin Binney 3rd, San Diego, California ( November 13, 1975 - August 27, 1990 ) (3) San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, California ( August 27, 1990 - )
  • Label Copy : * Label Copy: These wooden covers once protected a Buddhist manuscript, now lost. The sides painted with Jataka stories (scenes from the life of the Buddha) were the insides, held flat against the paper leaves of the book and the whole wrapped with cloth. The paintings begin on the more damaged of the two; the scenes read from left to right.The Buddha announces to the Devas his intentions to be reborn upon the earth. Queen Maya, wife of King Suddhodana, dreams of a white elephant at the moment of her mystical conception of Gautama. The birth of Gautama from Maya's side. Lotuses grow beneath Gautama's feet as he takes his first seven steps. The next two episodes show the 29 years the prince spent in his father's palace, being educated and trained in all the arts. Discarding his royal ornaments and lifestyle, Gautama departs from the palace at night on a white horse whose hooves do not touch the ground in order not to waken anyone. On the second cover: Gautama cuts off his hair. In the mountains Gautama suffers extreme austerities to combat the influence of Mara, the enemy of his liberation. Alone and broken, Gautama is offered rice by a village woman. Even though he is surrounded by Mara's army of demons, Gautama attains Enlightenment. In a rainstorm Vishnu, Brahma and Siva hail the Buddha's victory. The Buddha preaches to his disciples. The Parinirvana, or death, of the Buddha. *September 2005 Devotional Arts of Nepal The inside faces of these book covers, which once protected a manuscript probably of the Perfection of Wisdom, are painted with scenes from the life of the Buddha Shakyamuni. (The Buddha's life story as depicted on these book-covers is related on the kiosk program.) The series of dense narrative scenes include local Nepali architecture and foliage that is reminiscent of trees in Indian painting. The jagged snowy mountains, swirling garments and peony-like lotuses are inspired from Tibeto-Chinese art. * Sonya Quintanilla (2014) Quebec Label Buddhist manuscript covers Nepal, 18th century Opaque watercolour on wood Edwin Binney 3rd Collection, 1990.167.a-b The inside faces of these book covers, which once protected a manuscript probably of the Perfection of Wisdom, are painted with scenes from the life of the Buddha Shakyamuni. The series of dense narrative scenes include local Nepali architecture and foliage that is reminiscent of trees in Indian painting. The jagged snowy mountains, swirling garments and peony-like lotuses are inspired from Tibeto-Chinese art.
  • Exhibition History : (1) Myths, Monsters, Maharajas: Introducing the Binney Collection, San Diego Museum of Art, 11/23/1991 - 1/26/1992 (2) Into India: South Asian Paintings from The San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego Museum of Art, 2/28/2012 - 5/27/2012