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GANDHARA SCHOOL OF ART

GROUP C

-Chandana Das
-Sandhya Sikha Laskar
-Popy Changmai
-Kuldeep Patowary
INTRODUCTION

• GANDHARA SCHOOL OF ART WAS A MAJOR SCHOOL OF ART IN THE


HISTORY OF ANCIENT INDIA.

• IT IS UNIQUELY ASSOCIATED WITH THE GRAECO-ROMAN STYLES OF ART.

• THE GANDHARA SCHOOL OF ART FLOURISHED FROM 1ST CENTURY BCE TO


4TH CENTURY CE.

• AREAS OF INFLUENCE: AFGHANISTAN AND PRESENT NORTH-WESTERN


INDIA. PROMINENT LOCATIONS WERE TAXILA, PESHAWAR, BEGRAM AND
BAMIYAN.
OF INSPIRATION AND INFLUENCES

• THIS STYLE OF ART WAS CLOSELY CONNECTED TO MAHAYANA BUDDHISM AND HENCE
THE MAIN THEME OF THIS ART WAS LORD BUDDHA AND BODDHISATTVAS.
• OTHER SUBJECTS TOO WERE REPRESENTED SUCH AS IMAGES OF GREEK GOD APOLLO
AND CERTAIN KINGS.
• THE GRAECO-ROMAN EFFECT ON GANDHARA ART CAN BE TRACED THROUGH :
a) HALO AROUND THE HEAD OF LORD BUDDHA
b) BUDDHA’S WAVY HAIR
c) FOREHEAD LINES
d) ORNAMENTS
e) DRAPE AND STYLE OF GARMENTS
FEATURES
• THIS SCHOOL CONTRIBUTED TO DEVELOPMENT OF BUDDHA'S
IMAGE, WHICH WAS USUALLY CARVED OUT OF GREY SLATE STONE
AND WAS CHARACTERISED BY HELLENISTIC FEATURES.

• THESE INCLUDE WAVY HAIR IN A TOP KNOT, SOMETIMES A


MOUSTACHE ON THE FACE, URNA (A DOT OR THIRD EYE) BETWEEN
THE EYEBROWS, GARMENT WITH THICK PLEATS USUALLY
COVERING BOTH SHOULDERS STYLED LIKE A ROMAN TOGA, PLAIN
HALO BEHIND AND MUSCULAR FORMATION OF THE BODY.

• THE GANDHARA STYLE OF ART THAT DEVELOPED IN SCULPTURE


WAS A FUSION OF GRECO-ROMAN AND INDIAN STYLES.

• THE DISTINGUISHING GANDHARA SCULPTURE IS THE STANDING OR


SEATED BUDDHA.
INDIAN FEATURES
• ICONOGRAPHY IS ABUNDANT IN INDIAN FEATURES.

• THE SEATED BUDDHA IS MOSTLY CROSS-LEGGED IN THE ESTABLISHED


INDIAN MANNER.

• THE HAIR IS EITHER IN WAVES OR IN TAUT CURLS OVER HIS WHOLE


HEAD.

• THE EXTENDED EARS ARE MERELY DUE TO DOWNWARD THRUST OF


HEAVY EARRINGS WORN BY A PRINCE OR ROYAL PEOPLE.

• BUT IN GANDHARA, PEOPLE NEVER WORE EAR-RINGS OR


ORNAMENTS OF ANY KIND
GRECO-ROMAN INFLUENCE
1. THIS SCHOOL IS INFLUENCED BY GRECO-ROMAN TECHNIQUES
TO A GREATER EXTENT.

2. ONE OF THE REASONS IS DEFINITELY THE GEOGRAPHICAL


LOCATION OF THE SCHOOL.ART WAS THE DEPICTION OF HUMAN
BODY IN A REALISTIC MANNER WITH GREATER PHYSICAL MAHĀ MĀYĀ DREAMING OF THE
WHITE ELEPHANT, GANDHĀRA
RELIEF, 2ND CENTURY CE; IN THE
ACCURACY ELABORATE ORNAMENTATION AND COMPLEX BRITISH MUSEUM.

SYMBOLISM.

3. GANDHARA SCHOOL WAS HEAVILY INFLUENCED BY GREEK


METHODOLOGIES, THE FIGURES WERE MORE SPIRITUAL AND
SCULPTED MAINLY IN GREY, AND GREAT DETAIL WAS PAID TO
EXACT DEPICTION OF BODY PARTS. THE BIRTH AND THE FIRST SEVEN
STEPS OF THE BUDDHA, GRAY
SCHIST RELIEF, GANDHARA, 2ND OR
3RD CENTURY CE; IN THE ART
INSTITUTE OF CHICAGO.
IMAGE OF BUDDHA
• GANDHARA ART ALSO HAD DEVELOPED AT LEAST TWO SPECIES
OF IMAGE IN WHICH BUDDHA IS THE FUNDAMENTAL FIGURE OF
AN EVENT IN HIS LIFE, DISTINGUISHED BY ACCOMPANYING
FIGURES AND A DETAILED SCENE AND BACK-GROUND.

• FOR EXAMPLE, ONE OF THE ADJOINING BODHISATTVAS IS


DISTINGUISHED AS AVALOKITESHWARA BY THE TINY SEATED
BUDDHA IN HIS HEADGEAR

• OTHER FEATURES OF THESE IMAGES INCLUDE TREE ABOVE


BUDDHA, SPIKY LOTUS UPON WHICH HE SITS, AND THE
EFFORTLESSLY IDENTIFIABLE FIGURINES OF INDRA AND
BRAHMA ON BOTH SIDES.
INFLUENCES AND EVOLUTION OF FEATURES

1. STRENGTH OF CLASSICAL ELEMENTS IN THE ART OF GANDHARA


PROVINCE IS BEST SEEN IN PORTRAIT HEADS AND THE
REPRESENTATIONS OF CLASSICAL DEITIES WHICH FOUND THEIR WAY
INTO THE BUDDHIST ART OF NORTH-WESTERN INDIA.

2. THEME IS MAINLY BUDDHIST, DEPICTING VARIOUS STORIES FROM THE


LIFE OF BUDDHA.

3. EMPHASIS IS LAID ON BODILY FEATURES AND EXTERNAL BEAUTY.

4. INITIALLY SCULPTURES WERE MADE ON STONE AND LATER ON


BUDDHA STATUE, IN THE
STUCCO WHICH WERE BOTH GREY IN COLOUR. GANDHARA STYLE, C. 2ND
CENTURY; IN THE DELHI
MUSEUM, INDIA.
DEPICTION
• VARIOUS MUDRAS OF BUDDHA IN GANDHARA ART

• ABHAYAMUDRA : DON’T FEAR

• DHYANAMUDRA : MEDITATION

• DHARMACHAKRA MUDRA: A PREACHING MUDRA

• BHUMISPARSHAMUDRA: TOUCHING THE EARTH

.
BUDDHA IN GANDHARA SCHOOL
Summing Up
• FROM THE ABOVE DISCUSSION,ONE CAN IDENTIFY
DIFFERENT TYPES OF HELLENISTIC FEATURES ON ART
PIECES THAT WERE PREDOMINATELY SEEN AS
BUDDHIST.

• BUDDHA, IN EARLIER TIMES WAS NOT TO BE DISPLAYED


IN ART PIECES. HOWEVER TODAY THE IMAGE OF THE
BUDDHA IS SEEN TO BE MANIFESTED ALL AROUND THE
WORLD THROUGH THE GANDHARA SCHOOL OF ART.
THANK YOU