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    A Chinese Carved Limestone Seated Figure of Maitreya Buddha, Longmen Grottoes, Luoyang, Henan Province, Northern Wei Dynasty
    Marks: Paper label verso MATHIAS KOMOR, CHINESE ART, NEW YORK, C46, (various)
    17-1/2 x 10-3/4 x 2 inches (44.5 x 27.3 x 5.1 cm)

    Christie's, New York, September 21, 2000, lot 188;
    Mathias Komor, New York, Chinese Art, lot C46;
    North American university collection.

    The figure deftly carved seated with legs crossed at the ankles, the folds of the thin dhoti cascading down the edge of the base and its legs in a series of rhythmic folds, slender torso with tapered waist, the elongated earlobes and the tall flaring crown framing the slightly bulging eyes gazing down in contemplation below arched brows issuing from the curve of the broad nose, all above the full lips drawn in a tender smile. The grey stone was originally part of a wall fragment in the Longmen caves, located south of Luoyang in Henan province, where it has been suggested that related examples would have stood in niches along the northern wall of the Guyang cave. Figures such as the present example, are identified as Maitreya Buddha, the successor of the historic Sakyamuni Buddha. A very similar example of Maitreya Buddha seated with ankles crossed and with the left hand resting on a guardian lion is found in the Museum Rietberg, Zurich, as illustrated by O. Sirén, Chinese Sculptures in the von der Heydt Collection, Zurich, 1959, Catalogue no. 11. Another depiction of Maitreya Buddha from Longmen, similarly seated but cradling its cheek in a pensive posture, in the collection of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York, was illustrated by Andrew C. Ritchie, Catalogue of the Paintings and Sculpture in the Permanent Collection, Albright Art Gallery, Buffalo, 1949, p. 212, no. 209. It was subsequently sold at Sotheby's New York, March 20 2007, lot 503, alongside the renowned archaic bronze fangjia (lot 507). As with the current lot, the fangjia was also purchased from Mathias Komor who was the leading dealer in Chinese art in New York in the post-war period and assisted in the formation of major institutional and private collections.

    Estimate: $40,000 - $60,000.

    Condition Report*: Mounted to stone back plate and seated to black granite base measuring 11-1/2 x 4-3/8 x 1-1/2 inches (29.2 x 11.0 x 3.8 cm), figure pieced together with adhesive residue visible verso, fleabites to corners and edges of base, figure appears to levitate above base in dramatic fashion, presents well.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. Heritage does not guarantee the condition of frames and shall not be liable for any damage/scratches to frames, glass/acrylic coverings, original boxes, display accessories, or art that has slipped in frames. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Proxy Bidding Ends
    11th Friday 9:50 am CT
    Auction Dates
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