Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

Ashmolean − Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

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Figure of the bodhisattva Jizō

  • Description

    The Buddhist figure Jizō is a special protector of children, travellers and women. Jizō is an example of a bodhisattva – enlightened beings who devote their lives to freeing others from suffering. Bodhisattvas are not worshipped, but inspire others to reach enlightenment.

    Jizō is usually shown as a monk with a shaven head and pilgrim’s robes, carrying a staff with metal rings that jingle to warn insects of his approach. Jizō also carries the bright jewel of Buddhist truth, a symbol of the endless power of Buddhism. He has a third eye on his forehead and elongated ears, both symbols of enlightenment.

  • Details

    Associated place
    Asia Japan (place of creation)
    Date
    16th century (1501 - 1600)
    Material and technique
    wood, with carved decoration, and traces of lacquer and gilding
    Dimensions
    160 x 65 x 75 cm max. (height x width x depth)
    Material index
    organicvegetal wood,
    organicvegetalresin lacquer,
    Technique index
    formed carved,
    Object type index
    No. of items
    1
    Credit line
    Presented by M. Georges van Houten, in memory of his wife Anne Suzanne, 1961.
    Accession no.
    EA1961.122

Glossary

lacquer

  • lacquer

    Chinese and Japanese lacquer is made from the sap of the lacquer tree, which is indigenous to Eastern China. It is applied to wood as a varnish or for decorative effect. In India and the Middle East, lacquer is made from the deposit of the lac insect.

Location

    • Second floor | Room 36 | Japan

Objects are sometimes moved to a different location. Our object location data is usually updated on a monthly basis. Contact the Jameel Study Centre if you are planning to visit the museum to see a particular object on display, or would like to arrange an appointment to see an object in our reserve collections.

 

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