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Art of Gandhara echoed largely Buddhist patronage, although other deities and themes were not ignored. Explain.

Topic:  Indian Culture will cover the salient aspects of Art forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

1. Art of Gandhara echoed largely Buddhist patronage, although other deities and themes were not ignored. Explain. (250 words)

Reference: Art and culture by Nitin Singhania

Why this question:

The question is based on the principle art of Gandhara and the contributions of Buddhist patronage it received during the period.

Key demand of the question:

Explain the coming of Gandhara art, key features and the influence of Buddhism through the route of patrons upon the art.

Directive:

Explain – Clarify the topic by giving a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the particular context. You must be defining key terms where ever appropriate, and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by defining what constitutes Gandhara art and its evolution.

Body:

Gandhara art is a style of Buddhist visual art that developed in northwestern Pakistan and eastern Afghanistan between the 1st century BCE and the 7th century CE.

Discuss the features that assert the influence of Buddhist culture on the Gandhara art form.

List down features that assert Buddhist influence such as –

  • Buddha, who was hitherto designated only by a symbol, was conceived in human form.
  • His person was given some of the 32 suspicious bodily signs associated with the Mahapurushalakshana, such as the protuberance of the skull, the hair-knot, bindi between the eyebrows and elongated ears.
  • Buddhist practice incorporated some aspects of popular religion, evident from Stupas and female figures at Stupas.

Conclusion:

Conclude with significance and that though the art was largely influenced by Buddhism other cultures of Gods and goddesses were not totally ignored.