Lecture / Reading

Buddhist Images in Gandharan Monasteries: The Context of Creations

Sponsored by Ho Center for Buddhist Studies at Stanford, Continuing Studies


Saturday, October 8, 2011
1:00 pm –
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Annenberg Auditorium, Cummings Art Building

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Understanding Buddhist Art

Buddhist Images in Gandharan Monasteries: The Context of Creations

Gandhara, a region located in the northwestern corner of the Indian subcontinent, was one of the peripheral areas of Indian civilization and is thus often mistakenly thought to lie outside its geographical boundaries. However, it was once an active region with its own remarkable cultural achievements competing with other regional units of Indian culture until the hegemony of Indian civilization was established by the middle Gangetic valley. Gandhara played an equally important role in the development of Indian Buddhism. As one of its flourishing centers, it produced a number of important scriptures and treatises as well as eminent practitioners and theoreticians. It was also the home of a distinctive visual tradition known as “Gandharan art,” which comprised visual images dedicated in the form of independent statues, narrative reliefs, and complex steles inside Buddhist monasteries. The Buddhist visual tradition of Gandhara fascinates us with its many different aspects, perhaps the foremost of which has been its manifest indebtedness to the Western classical tradition. This talk will focus on its internal issues, especially how such visual images relate to Buddhist communities and monasteries in Gandhara.

Juhyung Rhi
Professor of Art History, Seoul National University
Juhyung Rhi received a PhD from UC Berkeley in Indian and Buddhist art. He has written extensively on early Indian Buddhist art, particularly the tradition of Gandhara, as well as Korean Buddhist art. His publications include several books on Gandhara, Afghanistan, Korea, and India.

Saturday, October 8
1:00 – 4:00 pm
Annenberg Auditorium, Cummings Art Building

Understanding Buddhist Art is a series of quarterly Saturday seminars. Co-sponsored by Stanford’s Ho Center for Buddhist Studies and Stanford Continuing Studies, each seminar will take us to a different part of the Buddhist world, and to different periods in its cultural history with richly illustrated lectures and discussion.

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