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Maker(s):Charlesworth, Sarah
Culture:American (1947-2013)
Title:Levitating Buddha (from the series 0+1)
Date Made:1999 image capture and print
Materials:Laminated Fujiflex color photograph
Measurements:Frame: 44 in x 34 in; 111.76 cm x 86.36 cm
Accession Number:  MH 2011.14
Credit Line:Gift of Jennifer J. Vorbach (Class of 1978)
Museum Collection:  Mount Holyoke College Art Museum

Very pale image of a statue of the seated Buddha floating on a while ground.

Label Text:
In this large-scale photograph, the outline of a seated Buddha is barely visible. One might wonder if the levitating form is an original sculpture from an archaeological site in China or a replica from a tourist gift shop. Sarah Charlesworth uses photography to question the commercial world that surrounds us. The ethereal image represents the aura of Buddhism at antique shops, meditation centers, and yoga retreats in the West. As the figure disappears into the milk-white ground, the over-exposed photograph echoes the Buddhist idea of enlightenment, the moment at which the soul releases itself from the physical constraints of the body.

-Ajay Sinha, Professor of Art History, Mount Holyoke College (Sept. 2016)

Buddhism; religion

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