Very large hanging scroll depicting Nehan-zu 涅槃図

Price:  5.500,00

Rare and important, more then 200 years old, very large hanging scroll depicting the entrance of the Buddha into nirvana (Nehan-zu) 涅槃図.

Shakyamuni Buddha lies on a platform with his head leaning on his right arm, and with its eyes peacefully closed. Shakyamuni faces westward in a final trance after a long life of teaching, the golden body of the Buddha bears the marks of his enlightened nature. Short curls covering his head indicate his ascetic life. A cranial protuberance between his brows attest to his penetrating wisdom.

High above Shakyamuni, a full moon illuminates the entire scene. To the left of the moon, the mother of Shakyamuni, Maya, stands on a floating cloud mourning the death of her son. On her cloud, she is accompanied by three attendees. She is led by the monk Aniruddha, who stands on a floating cloud in front of her.

Grieving, crying and lamenting beings are grouped closely around the death bed; his students are in close proximity, followed by Bodhisattva’s, who look calm and serene as enlightened beings, but also deities, demons and kings of heaven. Those witnessing the Buddha’s passing from earthly life reveal their own imperfect level of enlightenment in the extent of their grief.

Surrounding its death bed, in between the different beings, eight sala trees stand tall. As the trees stand protectively around the scene, the leaves already are changing its hue.

In the lower area, all different kinds of animals and mythical creatures, small and big, grieve in their imperfect understanding of the Buddhist ideal. They are arranged quite independently of each other, unlike the figures above them.

The painting is done in colour, ink and gold on paper. It is set in a ‘Literati’-mounting. The kami-ichimonji and the shimo-ichimonji (the fabric attached above and under the painting) are made of a shiny black and gold brocade silk with a flower, leaf and vine flower motif. The naka-mawashi (the fabric surrounding the painting) is made of grey/blue painted paper with an cloudy effect to it decorated here and there by flowers and petals in grey and white. The jikusaki (the roller knobs) are made of light brown and blue silk with a wave and shell motif.

Considering its age, the painting is in a good condition with only traces of age and wear. One noteworthy point is a bit of water damage in the lower middle area. Please see the photos as a reference of its condition.

Height: 252.5 cm; Width: 171.5 cm.
Jikusaki Diameter Ø 4 cm.
Edo-period (1600-1868) – 18 th century.
When shipped we will add a certificate of authenticity.

There are so many nice details, so please have a look at all the 20 different pictures.

(Some of the information in the description of the painting comes from The MET museum, N.Y.)

Ref. No. : 211368


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