Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content
Seattle Art Museum (SAM)


Photo: Elizabeth Mann


ca. 1130

Seated cross-legged, this Amida Buddha is in a meditative pose with his eyes slightly downcast and hands held in the meditation mudra. It was constructed using a technique called yosegi-tsukuri, which was developed in the late 10th century. In this method, statues are assembled from multiple wood blocks, which are then carved and hollowed out. The resulting statues, such as this one, became lighter in weight compared with those carved from a single block of wood. A coat of lacquer and gold was then applied to the surface. This sculpture would have been seated on a lotus pedestal, possibly flanked by two bodhisattvas. It was originally from a temple in Kyoto, and is an exemplary work made in the 12th century in the capital area.
Wood with gold lacquer
37 1/4 x 27 x 17 in.
Gift of the Monsen Family
Provenance: Sorin-ji Temple, Washiomachi, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto, established by 12th century; [probably sold on behalf of Sorin-ji by Mayuyama & Co., Tokyo]; purchased from Mayuyama by Dr. R. Joseph Monsen, 1959 or 1960
Photo: Elizabeth Mann
Not currently on view


Exhibition HistorySeattle, Washington, Seattle Asian Art Museum, inaugural installations, July 28 - August 6, 1994

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Asian Art Museum, Japanese Buddhist art installation, 8 November 8, 2000 – June 28, 2002

The Seattle Art Museum acknowledges that we are located on the ancestral land of the Coast Salish people.