Monday, October 3, 2016

Kongo Rikishi

Initial Reaction
     This figure seems to be large and menacing, holding a hand out as if too ward off something. The figure is in a contrapposto position. The hips are tilted and seem to jut forward, bringing the center of balance to mainly the (viewers) left foot with the manubrium directly above that food. There are two main diagonals that cut across in this piece. The first is the drapery and the legs that move from the bottom right to the upper left. The second is the angle of the torso and the club, moving from the upper right to the lower left.
After Research
     Kongo Rikishi was made by Unkei for the Grand South doors of the Todai-ji temple in Nara. This sculpture was made in 1203 using multiple sections of wood. This allowed for Unkei to have the freedom to make more dramatic movements within the piece, as it was 26'6". This guardian was paired up with another to help guard the temple. They are manifestations of a wrathful god in the Mahayana Buddhist pantheon.

              Wiki Commons

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