This lecture discusses a particular type of Buddha image, those seated – or literally enthroned – in bhadrasana, which is the posture with both legs foreword, bent at the knee, with feet firmly planted on the ground or a lotus pedestal. This type is often found in Southeast Asian images of the 7th and 8th centuries, specifically in Java and the Mekong Delta, and in the art of Dvaravati, one of Thailand’s oldest religious cultures. While dealing with local stylistic traits and innovations, this lecture traces the origins of this posture in South Asia, its spread throughout Southeast Asia, and also examines its meanings. For the sake of comparison, the talk will review the different contemporary sites in India, Central Asia, and Eastern Asia where similar imagery was made during the first millennium AD.
About the speaker
Nicolas Revire has been a lecturer at the Faculty of Liberal Arts, Thammasat University (Bangkok), since 2003. His PhD is from the Université Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris 3. He specialises in the Buddhist art and archaeology of South and Southeast Asia, with a research focus on pre-modern Thailand. He is general editor of Before Siam: Essays in Art and Archaeology (2014).
This lecture is free. Seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. No registration is required.
Image: Intrusive panel with triad of Buddhas from Kaṇherī Cave 67, late fifth or early sixth century CE. Photograph by Nicolas Revire