"Early Buddhist Manuscript Painting: The Palm-Leaf Tradition" Exhibition

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

poster for "Early Buddhist Manuscript Painting: The Palm-Leaf Tradition" Exhibition

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The exhibition displays the Museum’s rare holding of Indian illuminated palm-leaf manuscripts focuses on one remarkable Mahayanist Buddhist text, the Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita Sutra (Perfection of Wisdom). In the Buddhist pantheon, this meditation text is also represented in a personified form as the goddess of the same name. These superbly illustrated folios are supported by related illuminated book covers, sculptures, and Tibetan thankas. A vast body of Indian religious texts was recorded and transmitted though the medium of the palm-leaf manuscript. This humble form of the book, at once both fragile and resilient, has provided the vehicle for transmitting Indian religious thought for more than 2,000 years and has been a medium for preserving some of the earliest-known surviving paintings from India.



from July 29, 2008 to March 22, 2009

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    The Speaking Tree: Sutras on Palm Leaves

    With "Early Buddhist Manuscript Painting: The Palm-Leaf Tradition," the Metropolitan Museum of Art provides a rare look at a unique religious text from India.

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