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Digambara Jain manuscript page: Jina and worshippers

Accession Number
1975/2.180

Title
Digambara Jain manuscript page: Jina and worshippers

Artist(s)
Artist Unknown, India, Rajasthan, Sirohi School

Object Creation Date
18th century

Medium & Support
ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper

Dimensions
11 7/16 in x 7 3/8 in (29 cm x 18.8 cm);11 7/16 in x 7 3/8 in (29 cm x 18.8 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Leo S. Figiel and Dr. and Mrs. Steven J. Figiel.

Label copy
Gallery Rotations Fall 2012
Jina and worshippers from Digambara Jain manuscript
India, Sirohi School
18th century
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Leo S. Figiel and Dr. and Mrs. Steven J. Figiel, 1975/2.180
In the Jain religion, book production reflects the integral relationship among the laity, monastic community, and the Jina, or enlightened Jain teacher. The dedication of sacred books for shrines is required of devotees, and while commissioning a book fulfills the lay obligation of charity, beholding a book helps the individual achieve the proper mental state for spiritual guidance. It was customary for a lay donor to commission a copy of a text for presentation to his spiritual teacher and ultimately to the temple library. Over the centuries, monastic libraries received great quantities of texts, which were employed in the instruction of monks and nuns, who were themselves discouraged from practicing the art of painting: one text expressly warns of the power of painting to arouse sensual feelings. In these colorful pages, both the golden-hued Jina seated on a simple throne and the monk who venerates him are naked, identifying them as Digambara (sky-clad) Jina.

Subject matter
The stark picture reflects essential features of the Jain faith: the ideal of renunciation, meditation on the Jina, and reliance on canonical texts. Dedication of sacred books is required of Jain devotees, and book production reflects the integral relationship between the laity, monastic community, and the Jina. Commissioning a book fulfills the lay obligation of charity, while beholding a book helps the individual achieve the proper mental state for spiritual guidance.
It was customary for a lay donor to commission a copy of a text for presentation to his spiritual teacher and ultimately to the monk’s temple library. Over the centuries, libraries received great quantities of texts, which were employed in the instruction of monks and nuns. Monks and nuns were discouraged, however, from practicing the art of painting: one text expressly warns them of the power of painting to arouse sensual feelings.

Physical Description
This image is divided in to 6 relatively equal portions, with the two most upper portions being slightly larger. Each section contains a human figure, except for the lower right section which contains 3 fish. The three figures on the left are featured profile facing towards the right. The two figures in the two lower sections on the right, mirror the left side and face profile to the left. The figure in the upper right corner faces out. This figure is yellow, without clothing, on a green background. This figure is also seated on a lotus blossom form above all the other figures. The figure to his left is also without clothing and is the only other figure to be seating not directly on the floor.
The dominate colors in this image rotate between orange, green, red and blue with yellow highlights.

Primary Object Classification
Unbound Work

Primary Object Type
leaf

Collection Area
Asian

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form.

Keywords
figures (illustrations)
fish (animals)
interior views

2 Related Resources

Art of the Mughal Empire
(Part of 2 Learning Collections)
Introduction to Manuscripts and Early Print
(Part of 2 Learning Collections)

& Author Notes

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