The Stein Collection

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artist
Unknown
attributions_note
bibliography
Stein, Marc Aurel. Serindia: detailed report of explorations in Central Asia and westernmost China. Oxford: Clarendon, 1921, vol. 3, p.1175
collection_code
EAS
credit
Stein Loan Collection. On loan from the Government of India and the Archaeological Survey of India. Copyright: Government of India
date_end
0900-12-31
date_start
0700-01-01
date_text
700-900 (made)
descriptive_line
Face of Buddha, China.
dimensions
Length: 26.67 cm, Width: 20.3 cm above eyes
edition_number
event_text
exhibition_history
gallery
historical_context_note
Yar-khoto was an oasis town on the northern Silk Road. It served as the capital of Turfan until the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD). Stein was impressed by the massive ruins at the site and visited repeatedly while excavating at the town of Turfan nearby. Among the remains of several Buddhist shrines he found fragments of stucco sculpture, a quilted shoe, and a bronze ornament depicting small gilded Buddha figures seated on a lotus branch. Numerous Chinese copper coins dating to the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD) indicated that the site had been occupied during this time. A larger than life Buddha head from Yarkhoto is in the V&A Stein collection.
historical_significance
history_note
Excavated at the site of Yar-khoto.
id
106868
label
last_checked
2014-08-30T02:46:04.000Z
last_processed
2014-08-30T02:46:04.000Z
latitude
42.184158
location
In Storage
longitude
84.964111
marks
materials
Clay, fibre
materials_techniques
Moulded soft clay mixed with fibre
museum_number
LOAN:I A SURVEY.11
museum_number_token
loaniasurvey11
object_number
O136519
object_type
Buddha head
on_display
original_currency
original_price
physical_description
Face of Buddha from an over life-size statue. The face has narrow, oblique and arched eyes; a small mouth with well-formed lips and deeply indented corners. The whole was painted in pink with the eyeballs painted in white. The holes for the pupils are now empty, but were probably filled with stone or paint. Directly below the under lip is a round hole, about which are remains of white paint covered with blue. The surface of nose, forehead and left side of the face are lost.
place
Xinjiang
primary_image_id
production_note
from Yar-khoto
production_type
public_access_description
This face of the Buddha originally came from an over life-size statue. The face has narrow, oblique and arched eyes; a small mouth with well-formed lips and deeply indented corners. The whole was painted in pink with the eyeballs painted in white. The holes for the pupils are now empty, but were probably filled with stone or paint. Directly below the under lip is a round hole, about which are remains of white paint covered with blue. The surface of nose, forehead and left side of the face are lost. It was found in a passage on the back of a platform in an ruined Buddhist shrine at the site of Yar-khoto. The ancient city of Yar-khoto was built on a high cliff to the west of Turfan and once was an important administrative centre as it was located at the junction of the Silk Roads north and south of the Tianshan Mountain range. The Victoria and Albert Museum has more than 70 ceramic fragments and fragments of Buddhist sculptures, as well as around 600 ancient and medieval textiles recovered by Sir Marc Aurel Stein (1862-1943) during his second expedition (1906-8) into Chinese Central Asia, where he once again visited and excavated sites on the southern Silk Road, before moving eastwards to Dunhuang. At Dunhuang, he studied and excavated the Han-dynasty watchtowers to the north of the town, as well as the Mogao cave temples to the southeast, where he acquired material from the Library Cave. From there he moved on to the northern Silk Road, stopping briefly at Turfan sites but not carrying out any excavations. He made a perilous north-south crossing of the Taklamakan desert in order to hasten to Khotan where he excavated more ancient sites, before finishing off his expedition with surveying in the Kunlun Mountains.
related_museum_numbers
rights
2
shape
site_code
slug
the-stein-collection-buddha-head-unknown
sys_updated
2013-08-16T00:00:00.000Z
techniques
moulded, incised
title
The Stein Collection
updated
vanda_exhibition_history
year_end
900
year_start
700