polychrome wood statue of a Confucian scholar standing, holding a book (?) downward at waist toward the viewer, wearing a long flowing blue robe, red waisted skirt with black belt and a black hat

Attendant to a King of Hell, 19th century

Unknown artist, expand_more

In a Buddhist monastery, monks installed statues or paintings depicting the fierce Kings of Hell in the halls where they lived and studied. They offered prayers in an attempt to mitigate the punishments meted out on the souls of the deceased. In addition to painted and sculptural images of the Kings of Hell, artists also depicted attendant figures like this one, who holds a long scroll on which the names and judgments would be recorded. The simplified carving style and compact form of the figure are characteristic of Korean folk sculpture. In an interesting mixture of religious beliefs, the figure is dressed in the robes and lacquered hat of a Confucian scholar-official.

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Attendant to the King of Hell (#196)
Details
Title
Attendant to a King of Hell
Role
Artist
Accession Number
97.122.2
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polychrome wood statue of a Confucian scholar standing, holding a book (?) downward at waist toward the viewer, wearing a long flowing blue robe, red waisted skirt with black belt and a black hat