The Development of Buddha Images



Buddhism was founded in the sixth century B.C., and Buddha images began with representations of Sakyamuni Buddha. After the Buddha’s pariniravana, Buddhism started to spread out of India to the north and south, passing through Central Asia, Japan, Korea, and so on. Following the spread of Buddhism, Buddha images have developed according to time period, geographic location, and cultural traditions of an area. Responding to religious belief, local craftsmen and artisans created differing Buddha images that were both imposing and tranquil in appearance. This paper intends to show an evolution of Buddha images from non-iconic to iconic times, and the variation in form, garments and decorations used. From these, we can see the many different styles used and varying appearances of the Buddha according to different people.


Buddha Images, Sakyamuni Buddha, Mathura Style.


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