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Ti Tsang Buddha

Gilt Lacquer Wood Buddha Shrine
Ti-Tsang
Consecrated Jizo Buddha
Late Ming, Circa: 17th century
Statue: H 8 in (20cm.), W 4 in (10cm.), D 3" (7.5cm.)
Shrine: H 21 in (53cm.), W 9 in (23cm), D 7" (18cm)
Condition: lacquer and gilt loss.

This rare shrine wood sculpture of the Savior of Hell, Bodhisattva Ti-tsang (Japanese, Jizo; Sanskrit, Ksitigarbha) is an effigy once used in ritual that invokes the dead. The small statue has a powerful presence; possibly a result of ritual worship from former owners through the years.

This is a richly gilt and lacquered wood statue of King of the Under-world is carved in strict observation with the Chinese Buddhist tradition. The Buddha Ti-tsang sits in meditation on a lotus shrine, in front of a large mandorla guarded by two dragons. Near the top of the mandorla, the calligraphic character "Buddha", which is now faded away with the passing of time. The Ti-tsang statue appearers that it has been consecrated with a ritual blessing. There is a certain ritual offering embedded in the statue, to which a small package is visibly tied togethers with clothes and colored strings. Since we would not attempted to remove this item, we can only assume that it is likely a Taoist or Buddhist inscription of prayer. The statue is very light, it is believed to be hallowed out for purpose of preventing wood cracks.

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