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Gandharan Standing Bodhisattva Maitreya, Carved Black Schist, 2nd-4th Century



An impressive and well carved Gandharan figure of the Bodhisattva Maitreya, the Buddha of the Future, carved black schist, ancient Kingdom of Gandhara, 2nd-4th century. Maitreya is portrayed standing upright, one knee slightly bent in contrapposto, giving him an air of relaxation. Maitreya is dressed in princely attire, as benefits his station, festooned in jewels, and wearing a heavily pleated antariya covering his lower body, and an uttariya, slung casually over one shoulder and draped elegantly over one arm. The cloth of both garments draping and flowing beautifully around his body. His muscular torso is bare, save for the heavy necklaces that adorn his chest. Around his neck he wears a thick collar of Indo-Parthian influence, centered around a single stylized blossom. Over the collar lays a longer rope-form necklace with fantastic makara heads and a "jewel" to the center. Closer to his body, draped crosswise over one shoulder, are a series of amulet boxes threaded along a string necklace. Maitreya is further adorned with earrings and armlets. The long tresses of his flowing mane of hair held back with a beaded diadem. Although both hands are broken off, the standard iconography would have had Maitreya holding his right hand up in abhaya mudra, the gesture of dispelling fear, while the left hand would have hung by his side, holding a sacred vase filled with the elixir of life. Remnants of the vase and hand are visible along his left side. Maitreya is considered the Buddha of the Future, and the direct successor to Shakyamuni, the Historical Buddha. It is said that when the dharma, or teachings of the Buddha, are nearly gone from this world, that Maitreya will be reborn as the next Buddha. Until that time, he remains in his princely bodhisattva form, ruling over the Tusita Heaven. Presented on a custom black wooden stand. Measures: Height of figure only 18".


  • Dimensions
    Height: 18.75 in. (47.63 cm)Width: 8.25 in. (20.96 cm)Depth: 5 in. (12.7 cm)
  • Materials and Techniques
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
    circa 2nd-4th Century
  • Condition
    Wear consistent with age and use. Minor losses. Ancient losses, including both hands and feet, and the halo. Some newer damage to the bottom hem of the robe, as seen in photos.
  • Seller Location
    Austin, TX
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU894723424592

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    US$110 Standard Parcel Shipping
    to anywhere in the world, arrives in 3-5 weeks.
    We recommend this shipping type based on item size, type and fragility.
    Ships From: Austin, TX
  • Return Policy

    A return for this item may be initiated within 7 days of delivery.

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About the Seller
5 / 5
Located in Austin, TX

Founded in 2001, Lotus Gallery offers a carefully curated selection of furniture, jewelry, sculpture and works of art spanning millennia, continents and cultures. Although it seeks out beauty in all its forms, they specialize in Asian antiquities, especially Chinese pieces from the Han and Tang dynasties and chinoiserie. Based in Austi...

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Established in 2001
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Typical response time: 1 hour
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