Giridara Bodhisattva Statue

Giridara Bodhisattva Statue
Giridara Bodhisattva Statue (Sinhala: ගිරිදර බෝධිසත්ව ප්‍රථිමාව) is a small bronze discovered from Giridara in Gampaha District, Sri Lanka. It is presently on the display at the Gallery of Anuradhapura Period in the National Museum of Colombo.

The statue is 31.4 cm tall and represents Avalokitesvara, a Mahayana Bodhisattva (Chutiwongs et al., 2011). The sculptural style indicates relations to that of the Andra/Pallava region of South-East India of ca. 7th century (Chutiwongs et al., 2011). However, some features show a further improved version than that Indian style. Scholars have dated this statue to the early 8th century A.D. (Chutiwongs et al., 2011).

The statue is in the standing position. The high-piled headdress is adorned with a single flower (Chutiwongs et al., 2011). Both hands are half raised and the Katakahasta gesture is shown by the left hand while the right hand is in the gesture of Abhayamudra (Chutiwongs et al., 2011; Wikramagamage, 1990). The upper body is naked and the scarf which enwraps the hips runs up diagonally across the chest of the statue. The lower body is draped with the Antariya and a Dhoti is worn over it (Chutiwongs et al., 2011; Wikramagamage, 1990). The Dhoti is similar to the lower position of the robe worn by the Avukana Statue (Wikramagamage, 1990).

1) Chutiwongs, N.; Prematilleke, L.; Silva, R., 2011. Sri Lanka Murthi: Bodhisattva (Sri Lanka Sculpture: Bodhisattva). Central Cultural Fund. Ministry of Cultural and the Arts. pp.62-63.
2) Wikramagamage, C., 1990. [Wijesekara, N. (Editor in chief)] Section II: 500-1000 A.D. Archaeological Department Centenary (1890-1990): Commemorative Series: Vol. IV: Sculpture. p.67.

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This page was last updated on 8 January 2023
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