standing Jizo in 3/4 view, holds transluscent ball in left hand, staff in right and each foot on lotus leave base which are on a cloud; rays emanate from head, first immediately around head encircled, then more extensions in back; Jizo is elaborately clad in garment decorated with kirikane in motifs of the various layers of clothing

Welcoming Descent of Jizō Bodhisattva, first half 14th century

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Jizō is a bodhisattva (bosatsu in Japanese), a divine being who postpones enlightenment in order to assist the living. Here he descends to the earth on a cloud to save a suffering believer. He carries a staff and a wish-granting jewel (hōju). His feet rest on lotus blossoms. Although his head is shaved and his robes are those of a monk, Jizō’s body is adorned with gold jewelry and his outer garments are lavishly decorated with gold, signaling his status as a bodhisattva. Images of the descent of Jizō, which developed in Japan in the 1200s, likely originated at the religious complex made up of the Buddhist temple Kōfukuji and the Shinto shrine Kasuga in the city of Nara, a center for the worship of Jizō. s

Details
Title
Welcoming Descent of Jizō Bodhisattva
Role
Artist
Accession Number
2013.31.49
Curator Approved

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standing Jizo in 3/4 view, holds transluscent ball in left hand, staff in right and each foot on lotus leave base which are on a cloud; rays emanate from head, first immediately around head encircled, then more extensions in back; Jizo is elaborately clad in garment decorated with kirikane in motifs of the various layers of clothing