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22 Items in this Learning Collection

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Buddha Asyura (Ashura, Kôfukuji, Nara)

Accession Number

Buddha Asyura (Ashura, Kôfukuji, Nara)

Saitō Kiyoshi

Artist Nationality
Japanese (culture or style)

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support
color woodblock print on paper

17 3/4 in x 23 5/8 in (45 cm x 60 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Dr. Lawrence Preuss

Label copy

Saitô Kiyoshi
Japan, 1907–1997
Buddha Ashyura (Ashura, Kôfukuji, Nara)
Shôwa period (1926–89)
Color woodblock print on paper
Gift of Dr. Lawrence Preuss, 1986/2.65

Subject matter
This print is one of a series by the artist that evokes, in a highly abstract manner, famous Buddhist sculptures of Nara, the capital of Japan in the 8th century. The subject here is the slender, 8-armed figure of Ashura (in Sanskrit, Asura), dated to 734 and in the collection of Kôfukuji Temple in Nara. Ashura is a deity derived from Hindu beliefs, representing a class of powerful beings who were often in competition with the 'devas' or gods. In Buddhism, these spirits are adopted as protectors of the faith. The Ashura are not Buddhas, despite the title given the print by the artist.

Primary Object Classification

Primary Object Type
color print

Collection Area

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1 Related Resource

(Part of 2 Learning Collections)

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