By Qiang Ning
The cave-temple advanced popularly referred to as the Dunhuang caves is the world's greatest extant repository of Tang Buddhist paintings. the most effective preserved of the Dunhuang caves is the Zhai relations Cave, inbuilt 642. it really is this notable cave-temple that kinds the point of interest of Ning Qiang's cross-disciplinary exploration of the interrelationship of artwork, faith, and politics through the Tang. In his cautious exam of the work and sculptures chanced on there, the writer combines the old research of images with the pictorial research of heritage. by means of applying this two-fold technique, he's in a position to consult with textual proof in analyzing the formal gains of the cave-temple work and to hire visible info to fill within the ancient gaps unavoidably left via text-oriented students. the result's a complete research of the visible tradition of the interval and a brilliant description of social lifestyles in medieval China. the unique Zhai kin Cave images have been painted over within the 10th century and remained hidden till the early Nineteen Forties. as soon as uncovered, the early art seemed clean and colourful compared to different Tang work at Dunhuang.
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Extra info for Art, Religion and Politics in Medieval China: The Dunhuang Cave of the Zhai Family
E. e. trees” contain several tiers of the “lamp wheels” (denglun), on which numerous oil lamps shine (Fig. 9). The ten ﬂoors of the “lamp tower” are also ﬁlled with shining oil lamps (Fig. 10). These countless shining lamps embody the signiﬁcance of the sentence “lighting forty-nine lamps and letting their shining light ceaselessly burn for forty-nine days”34 and conﬁrm that the major theme of the painting is the Healing Ritual rather than the paradise of the Healing Master. MUSIC AND DANCE The lower section of the painting depicts a wide stage, which can be divided into three parts.
16). We cannot even ﬁnd it in the slightly later Xuanzang version. Why did the artist add a lotus pond in the painting? e. Buddhist scriptures. Most sutras on the Western Pure Land, including the Wuliangshou jing (Sutra of the Buddha of ally mention a lotus pond but do not describe it in inﬁnite life), Amituo jing (Amitâbha sutra), and Guan detail. For example, the Lotus Sutra (Miaofa lianhua Wuliangshou jing (Visualization sutra), describe in jing) talks about “rebirth through the lotus ﬂower” detail the beauty and splendor of the lotus ponds in but does not provide any details of the lotus pond.
Kâùyapa was converted to Buddhism after practicing nonBuddhist religious traditions for many years. He was one of the oldest disciples of the Buddha and gained the title of the Best in the Dhûta Practices (toutuo diyi). The other eight Great Disciples were also famous for their wisdom and accomplishment. Why did the young and the old become a visual focus in Buddhist cave-temples of medieval China? It is possible that the images of Ânanda and Kâùyapa represent the young and the old generations of Buddhist practitioners; therefore, all Buddhist monks, including the young and the old, could identify with the images.