4: Asuka Buddhist Art: Horyu-Ji (The Heibonsha Survey of Japanese Art, V. 4) (English and Japanese Edition)
- Publish Date: 1974-09-01
- Binding: Hardcover
- Author: Seiichi Mizuno
The monastery-temple complex Horyu-ji and its treasures represent the first great age of Buddhist art in Japan -- the age that began in the mid-sixth century with the introduction of Buddhism from the Asian continent and continued until the late seventh century. The adoption of the new religion by the imperial court and the aristocracy motivated a series of changes that came to affect every phase of Japanese culture. At the same time, it inspired the building of many imposting temples and the creation of the superb works of sculpture and paintings that were enshrined in them. Unfortunately, none of these early temples have survived intact, but the Horyu-ji, although considerably altered from its original state, remains today to suggest the feeling of the age, and many of its treasures of painting and sculpture date from that distant time. It is primarily with these treasures that the present book is concerned. Here, as part of a lavish selection of 205 illustrations, including 35 in full color, are such celebrated examples of early Japanese Buddhist art as the murals and the Shaka Triad of the Golden Hall, the Amida Triad of Lady Tachibana's Shrine, the statues of the Kudara Kannon and the Chugu-ji Miroku Bosatsu, and the Tamamushi Shrine -- all masterpieces that speak eloquently of the fervor with which Buddhism was received in ancient Japan and of the remarkable skill and devotion of the artists who created them. Here, too, is an illuminating study of the Horyu-ji itself: the social and cultural background from which it emerged, its significance in the religious life of the time, and the vicissitudes of its early history.