'Kannon, Bodhisattva' from the Amida Triad
This print is after a mural fresco wall painting of a Buddhist deity in the Kondo (Main Hall) of Horyuji Temple in Nara. In the ancient original fresco, Amida is flanked by his attendant bodhisattvas, Kannon at right, and Seishi at left. This sculptural configuration, known as an Amida Triad, is a visualization of the Welcoming Descent of Amida, who descends to this world with his heavenly retinue to provide salvation for all believers who have called upon his name. When a believer dies, Amida and his retinue venture to this world to rescue the deceased. This Kannon is appreciated in particular for its sensuous Indian style of beauty. Kannon was in time to become the most widely worshipped Buddhist deity in all of Japan. As the right-hand assistant of Amida, she makes even more accessible the salvation which Amida promises to all. Kannon is the goddess of mercy and she originates from China where her name is Guanyin. Kannon is not a Buddha, but a Bodhisattva, a being who is able to achieve Nirvana but delays doing so through compassion for suffering beings. This print is sealed on the verso with a red circular seal with Kanji characters. It is on thickened Japanese rice paper, measuring 14" x 12" under its ivory mat, and it is nicely framed in a simple brown frame measuring 20.5" x 16.5".
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