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Statue of Guanyin with a baby, wood, 19th C

This statue is 50 cm high, very well carved in a dense hardwood stained brown, 19th C. Guanyin is the bodhisattva associated with compassion as venerated by Buddhists from China and other parts of East Asia (aka. Avalokitesvara in Sanskrit). During the Song dynasty (960-1279 AD) the style of this statue became more and more feminized until Guanyin was often shown as a woman as here. Couples who prayed to have a baby boy would sometimes commission such a statue and place it in the family temple.

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