Buddhist Triad

Artist/maker unknown, Japanese

Made in Japan, Asia

Muromachi Period (1392-1573)


Ink and colors on silk; mounted as a hanging scroll

Painting: 60 5/8 × 41 1/2 inches (154 × 105.4 cm) Mount: 8 feet 4 inches × 4 feet 4 1/2 inches (254 × 133.4 cm)

Curatorial Department:
East Asian Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Gift of Mrs. Samuel Bettle, 1928

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This monumental painting depicts the historical Shaka Buddha, or Shakyamuni, seated on a lotus throne. He is accompanied by the bodhisattvas (enlightened beings) Fugen and Monju, who embody wisdom and benevolence, respectively. On the right side of the Buddha, Fugen rides a six-tusked white elephant, with the tusks symbolizing the six senses and its body’s white color representing purity. On the left side, Monju rides a spirited guardian lion. Together with their powerful animal companions, the two bodhisattvas attend to the Shaka Buddha and help uphold and disseminate his teachings.