The Birth of Prince Siddhartha Gautama

Maligawage SarlisMid 20th century

Fukuoka Asian Art Museum

Fukuoka Asian Art Museum

It is said that Siddhartha (Buddha) was born from the right side or armpit of his mother, Maya, as she held on to a branch of a tree in Lumbini. Just as in this work, there are many depictions that portray the scene wreathed with angels. Observing the use of perspective and the luxurious garden landscape, however, the scenery has an illusory European flavour. The artist was a graphic designer, sculptor and painter, active in Sri Lanka in the first half of the twentieth century. During the 1910s he completed Buddhist murals at Maligakanda temple in Colombo. Later, these kinds of images were made into lithograph prints in Germany by Sri Lankan businessman William Pedris, and these spread throughout Sri Lanka. He was also active as a designer of advertisements in newspapers and magazines, and along with the setting up of a school for commercial art, left a significant mark, not only on the popularization of Sri Lankan modern art, but also on the development of this field.

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  • Title: The Birth of Prince Siddhartha Gautama
  • Creator: Maligawage Sarlis
  • Date: Mid 20th century
  • Physical Dimensions: w52.9 x h37.1 cm
  • Type: lithograph on paper