AGE: – 19th – Early 20th Century
CONSTRUCTION: – Thayo Lacquer, glass mosaics, gilded
DESCRIPTION: – Burmese Hollow Lacquer Buddha Statue Seated Under Naga
HEIGHT: – 72cm
WIDTH: – Bottom front 30cm
DEPTH: – 19.5cm
WEIGHT:– 2.7 kg.
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Burmese Hollow Lacquer Buddha Statue Under Naga decorated with coloured glass mosaics and thayo lacquer forming a snake like scaled pattern. Thayo lacquer derived from the tamarind tree forms a double row of lotus petals across the base, with a scrolling pattern of thayo lacquer inlaid with glass mosaics to form medallions above the top panel of lotus petals and scrolling patterns below the lotus petals.
The Naga, is one of the many mythical creatures mentioned in stories related to the Buddha and his search for enlightenment. The Naga is thought to have lived at the bottom of deep rivers in the ocean and deep down in the bowels of the earth as well as rivers and lakes, they protect meditators and posses strong magical powers. The Naga can fly but prefers not to as this exposes him to attacks from his enemy, the Galon (Garuda). The Naga has both an angry and peaceful side to his nature.
Images of the Buddha are sometimes showing him sitting under the naga meditating. In the sixth week of the Buddha’s search for enlightenment, whilst sitting under the bodhi tree there was heavy rain, whereupon the king of serpents (Naga), in an effort to protect the Buddha coiled himself around the Buddha’s body seven times, whilst holding his large hood over the Buddha’s head so that he would not get wet. Many depictions of this scene show the Naga with many heads, this Hollow Lacquer Buddha statue shows only one.
Read more on this story of the Naga and Buddhism