Cambodian Art (Khmer Art) Bayon temple Fisher, pp. 186-195
Term Paper • Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento (visit Asian Art Gallery by yourself) • Asian Art Museum of San Francisco (class meets on Saturday March 5th at 1 p.m.), February 19-May 8, 2005 • The Witt Gallery, The tradition Continues: Thai Art from the Past into the Present, April 19- April 28, 2005 • Paper: 4-5 page-long; focus on one or couple of objects; DEADLINE Wednesday April 27, 2005
Angkor Thom (Bayon temple) • Built during the reign of King Javayarman VII (13th century), Bayon period 1181-1243 (remained the capital city until the 17th century) • The king had many temples built: Banteay Kdei (for his teacher) in 1181, Ta Phrom (for his mother)in 1186and Pre Khan (for his father) in 1191 and Banteay Chmar (for his sons); founded 102 hospitals throughout the kingdom • Mahayana Buddhism was the state religion; focus on the Buddha sheltered by naga hoods, Lokesvara, and Prajanaparamita • The Doctrine of Self Professed by Jayavarmans VII is as much Hindu as it is Buddhist • His priority was to build a capital that would resemble the capital of Indra
The Bayon temple • Temple facing East and West direction • It is built in Greek cross plan; the main shrine is circular in shape and has 12 subsidiary chapels radiating out from it. • There were 49 towers (only 37 are standing); each has four colossal heads, dominate the four quarters of the world • The main temple is surrounded by rectangular roofed galleries which are punctuated by towers at the corners and at the center of each side; at ground level, outer closure,, is surrounded by a a gallery with corner pavilions and gopuras • Between 2nd and 3rd enclosure are 16 large chapels where Buddhist deities were housed.
The Bayon temple • At the S gate is a bridge that represents the churning of the Sea of Milk; Naga represents rainbow and bridge of heaven; crossing from the world of man to the world of gods
Walls • Outer walls depicted: historical scenes of war with Chams, and every day life in the kingdom
Lokesvara and Prajnaparamita • The Central shrine of the Bayon temple sat enthroned the Buddha sheltered by naga hoods--the most popular type of Buddha image during his period • Lokesvara (Lord of the World), a form of Bodhisattva, symbolizes power of the king (infinite compassion); holds a lotus, a water pot (contains nectar of immortal), a book and a rosary • Prajnaparamita, Transcendent Buddha of Wisdom (complete wisdom); holds a book and a lotus flower • Buddhist triad: Buddha sheltered by naga hoods, Loskesvara and Prajnaparamita-most popular during the reign of Jayavarman VII • Bhaisajyaguru, the Buddha of healing
Loskesvara • “O Victorious Lokesvara, living incarnation of the Tree of Paradise” ( Inscription from Preah Khan) • Cosmic Lokesvara has connection with Siva • He is the protector and the savior of suffering humanity