• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 1974

    Indian & Southeast Asian Art

    21 March 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 519

    A gray schist relief of the Birth of Siddhartha and the Seven Steps

    GANDHARA, 2ND/3RD CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    A gray schist relief of the Birth of Siddhartha and the Seven Steps
    Gandhara, 2nd/3rd century
    With Queen Maya giving birth to Siddhartha as Indra catches the newborn on the left, her sister on the right, flanked by further figures on either side and above, all deeply and boldly carved
    17 1/8 x 20 1/8 in. (43.5 x 51 cm.)


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    In the birth scene, Maya grasps the branches of the sal tree with one hand and has her other arm around her sister Mahaprajapati as Siddhartha emerges from her side. The god Indra holds out fresh linens to catch and swaddle the newborn. Two more female figures stand to the right, holding a palm branch and other offerings.
    The divine child is depicted again standing on the ground, where according to tradition he took seven steps in the direction of each of the cardinal points; see H. Ingholt, Gandharan Art in Pakistan, 1957, cat. no. 14, p. 52.

    Provenance

    Japanese Collection, 1990s