Skip Navigation

Heritage Search

National Treasure

Stone Standing Maitreya Bodhisattva of Gamsansa Temple, Gyeongju

경주 감산사 석조미륵보살입상 ( 慶州 甘山寺 石造彌勒菩薩立像 )

Heritage Search Detail
Classification National Treasure
Name of Cultural Properties Stone Standing Maitreya Bodhisattva of Gamsansa Temple, Gyeongju
Quantity 1 Item
Designated Date 1962.12.20
Age The 19th year of the reign of King Seongdeok of Unified Silla (720)
Address National Museum of Korea, 137, Seobinggo-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul

Located in Wolseong-gun, Gyeongsangbuk-do, Gamsansa Temple was built in 719 by a dedicated Silla Buddhist named Kim Ji-sung who wanted his religious devotion to move Buddha to bring peaceful rest to his deceased parents and protect the king and his royal family. He is said to have commissioned this Maitreya bodhisattva (National Treasure No. 81) for his mother and the Amitabha Buddha (National Treasure No. 82) for his father. Both stone statues are now stored in the National Museum of Korea in Seoul. This Maitreya statue is characterized by the lavishly decorated headgear that it wears and the attractively plump face wearing a benign expression. He is also wearing two luxurious beaded necklaces and a third beaded ornament draped from the neck further down to the legs. The robe is draped from the left shoulder, leaving the right bare, to cover the right arm before being drawn further downward; the skirt, worn with a beaded belt, runs downward to cover the ankles. Behind the bodhisattva is a mandorla representing the rays of light spreading from his head and body and which is edged with a flame motif. The pedestal on which the bodhisattva stands consists of a double-tier lotus base put on an octagonal foundation, all of which are carved with a single stone block. Behind the mandorla is an inscription showing that the bodhisattva was carved in 719 when Silla was under the rule of King Seongdeok. The technique of rendering the bodhisattva’s voluminous body suggests that the Silla artisans during this period were under the influence of the interregional trend of their time.