Seeking an online forum for dating and identifying Buddhist art
September 21, 2014 6:27 PM   Subscribe

I have acquired a Buddha and am curious about its origins.

I'm looking for an online forum where I can find some people who know way more than I do about Buddhist art and iconography. I have acquired a carved wooden Buddha and want to figure out its age, origin, etc.
I would like to find a website where I can post pictures and discuss this with people. I've tried searching on search engines but it's hard to weed through the zillion other things related to the search words that are not what I want.
posted by crazylegs to Media & Arts (6 answers total)
you might get better results with university art department>professor who teaches buddhist art.

i was frankly relieved when my misunderstanding about "dating" cleared up.
posted by bruce at 6:35 PM on September 21, 2014 [8 favorites]

Agree with bruce! I thought you were "dating" Buddhist art.

That said, in addition to university art departments, you could also try antiques dealers who specialize in this kind of art. I know librarians will trip over themselves to help people out with questions like this; I don't know whether the same is always true for art dealers but it couldn't hurt to try.
posted by orrnyereg at 8:11 PM on September 21, 2014 [1 favorite]

major auction houses (sotheby's, christie's) also have an expert in every art genre, and it's their JOB to get back to you with their assessment of whatever you showed them.
posted by bruce at 8:19 PM on September 21, 2014

This is a long shot, but if nothing else, you could post photos to one of the "identification" groups on flickr. "ID Please" is a big one; there are others. No guarantee that an art specialist might happen across your photos there, but they could. I've seen weirder stuff identified there.
posted by jessicapierce at 8:37 PM on September 21, 2014

Shambhala Sun (the buddhist magazine; I know) has an art subsection.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 7:36 AM on September 22, 2014

Himalayan Art Resource (HAR) has more than 20,000 images of art from the Himalayas, including an incredible variety of Buddha sculptures. This search page in particular may help you narrow down your Bhudda to a specific region and time period.

They can assess your object as well.
posted by rada at 7:45 AM on September 22, 2014

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