Unidentified Artist / Wakamiya of the Kasuga Shrine / Kamakura period (1185?1333), 13th centuryUnidentified Artist
Wakamiya of the Kasuga Shrine
Kamakura period (1185?1333), 13th century

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Creator Nationality: Asian; Far East Asian; Japanese
Creator Dates/Places: Japan
Creator Name-CRT: Unidentified Artist
Title: Wakamiya of the Kasuga Shrine
View: Principal view
Creation Start Date: 1200
Creation End Date: 1299
Creation Date: Kamakura period (1185?1333), 13th century
Object Type: Decorative Arts and Utilitarian Objects
Materials and Techniques: Hanging scroll; ink, color, and gold leaf on silk
Dimensions: 29 3/4 x 15 in. (75.6 x 38.1 cm)

This noble youth is a Shinto deity, the titular god of the Wakamiya (literally, "Young Prince Shrine"), founded about 1135 in Nara within the compound of the Kasuga Shrine, one of the oldest (established 768) Shinto institutions. Although the god is shown in courtly attire, his lotus pedestal and circular mandorla give him the appearance of a Buddhist deity. Poised in midair, the figure radiates an aura of deep mystery.

Depicted as a young man, symbolizing the spirit of renewal, he is also a youthful incarnation of the Buddhist god of wisdom, Manjushri (Japanese: Monju), whose sword "severs" ignorance. He is thus a product of the effort to reconcile Japan's native Shinto beliefs with the imported religion of Buddhism, a conflated image blending Buddhist iconography with the Shinto ideation of its deities.

AMICA Contributor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: New York, New York
ID Number: 1997.113
Credit Line: Promised Gift of The Mary and Jackson Burke Foundation Inc. , and Purchase, Lila Acheson Wallace Gift, 1997
Copyright: Copyright ? 2002 The Metropolitan Museum of Art . All rights reserved.
Rights: http://www.metmuseum.org/education/er_photo_lib.asp
AMICA ID: MMA_.1997.113
AMICA Library Year: 2002
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright (c) 2002 The Metropolitan Museum of Art. All Rights Reserved

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