Seated Luohan (Disciple of Buddha) by Unknown Artist

This life-sized statue depicts a Luohan (a follower of Buddha gifted with supernatural powers) seated in contemplation.


Sancai (three coloured) glazed stoneware
109 x 82 cm
Art Fund grant:
£1,000 ( Total: £1,480)
Acquired in:

The statue was made in North China, in the Hebei province, from the Liao dynasty, 907 - 1125 AD. The figure wears a green under-robe, and an orange-brown patchwork robe ornamented with half prunus-blossoms in white on yellow. The patchwork robe is a traditional garment donned by monks as a sign of humility. His elongated ears are an indication of his wisdom. The Luohans that survive from this set are so strikingly individualised they have been considered to be portraits of specific monks.

Venue details

British Museum Great Russell Street, LONDON London WC1B 3DG 020 7323 8181

Entry details

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