Head of Buddha

Ancient region of Gandhāra
3rd-4th century
H. 22 cm or 8 ⅝ in



Sometimes the face alone is enough. Here, the two signs of Buddhahood are very explicit: the small whorl of hair on the lower forehead (ūrṇā) is represented by a flat dot, and the cranial knob (uṣṇīṣa) is visible at the top of the skull. Following the tradition, the uṣṇīṣa is hidden by curly hair pulled back loosely and elegantly like a chignon. The half-closed eyes reflect the intensity of Buddha’s meditation.


Provenance: J.C. Moreau-Gobard, 1983; Private collection, Belgium.