The Luohan, Oil on gesso board panel, 61 x 46 x 2 cm, 2020 by Peter van Toth

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#Figurative #Portrait #Contemporary #Expressionism
About the work:

Oil on gesso board panel. W 46 x H 61 x D 2.2 cm.
This is a painting about a life-size, glazed terracotta sculpture of a seated figure representing a Luóhàn, which is a Chinese term for an arhat, one of the historical disciples of the Buddha. As Buddhist tradition developed, the most important were regarded as almost bodhisattvas or fully enlightened beings, with a range of supernatural powers. This sculpture of Luohan shows him seated with his hands on his lap, wearing a monk’s robes of green and brown is one of a set of 8 to 10 life-size Luohans made during the Liao dynasty (907–1125) which were discovered near caves, south of Beijing, in 1912. They reached the international art market and were bought for Western collections. The circumstances of the find and the details of how these figures entered the global art market have not been clarified.

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