Surviving nirvana : death of the Buddha in Chinese visual culture / Sonya S. Lee - Details - Trove
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Exhaustively researched, this study engages methods and debates from the fields of art history, religion, archaeology, architecture, and East Asian history that are relevant to both scholars and students alike. The many examples analyzed in the book offer well-defined local contexts to discuss broader historical and theoretical issues concerning representation, patronage, religion and politics, family values, and vision.
Lee is assistant professor of art history and East Asian languages and cultures at the University of Southern California. Customer Reviews Average Review.
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Surviving Nirvana: Death of the Buddha in Chinese Visual Culture
Large public screens have now become a ubiquitous part of the contemporary cityscape. Yet the cosmos revealed in these tableaux is strikingly different from that found in the text of the sutra. Shaping the Lotus Sutra explores this visual world. Challenging long-held assumptions about Buddhist art, Eugene Wang treats it as a window to an animated and spirited world. Rather than focus on individual murals as isolated compositions, Wang views the entire body of pictures adorning a cave shrine or a pagoda as a visual mapping of an imaginary topography that encompasses different temporal and spatial domains.
He demonstrates that the text of the Lotus Sutra does not fully explain the pictures and that a picture, or a series of them, constitutes its own "text. These pictures inspired meditative journeys through sophisticated formal devices such as mirroring, mapping, and spatial programming - analytical categories newly identified by Wang.
The book examines murals in cave shrines at Binglingsi and Dunhuang in northwestern China and relief sculptures in the grottoes of Yungang in Shanxi, on stelae from Sichuan, and on the Dragon-and-Tiger pagoda in Shandong, among other sites.
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