The Statues of Anuradhapura Era

  1. The Buddha Statue of Mahailluppallama

The six feet granite statue discovered from Mahailluppallama is said to be one of the oldest statue of Anuradhapura period. There is an opinion that this belongs to the period of one to two centuries B.C. The hair curled on the forehead shown as a dot and the broken right hand depicts the sign of Abhya mudra. The lines of the robe are shown in a design of parallel to each other.

The Buddha Statue of Mahailluppallama

The Buddha Statue of Mahailluppallama


 

2. The Samadi Statue of Mahamewna Park

This is a statue of standing for about 8 feet which is made out of granite. The face of the statue is pleasant with a slight smile, half closed eyes are turn downwards and the genius sculptor has tried to demonstrate the great kindness and the serenity of the Lord Budhha. There is no lines can be seen in the robe and the statue is in “weerasana” with the sign of “dyana mudra”. Although the statue depicts the influence of Gupta art school, the sculptor has had his own creative techniques at the carving of this statue.

The Samadi Statue of Mahamewna Park

The Samadi Statue of Mahamewna Park


 

3.The Samadi Statue of Tholuvila

This statue found from Tholuvila is in display in the national museum of Colombo at present. This statue is in “weerasana” with the sign of “dyana mudra” reflecting meditation. The hair on the head is curled and the robe does not bear any fleets. This is said to be similar to the Samadi Statue of Mahamewna Park and also reflects the style of the Gupta art school.

The Samadi Statue of Tholuvila

The Samadi Statue of Tholuvila


 

4.The Avukana statue

This is a standing statue facing the Kalawewa (tank of Kala) in Kekirawa in North Central province which is about 40 feet high, carved in to the granite rock during the period of King Dhathusena in 5th century. The right hand depicts the sign of “Abhaya mudra” and the left hand reflects the way touching the robe and it is said to be that the sculpture influenced the style of Amarawathi art school. . The fleets of the robe are carved with parallel lines and reflect the robe is touching the contour of the body. The statue stands on a granite lotus pedestal and the statue has been carved leaving a tiny slab in between the statue and the main rock to support. The sculptor has tried to demonstrate the greatness of the Lord Buddha and has taken every effort to maintain the balance and the proportion of all parts of the body which can be treated as a great creation.

The Avukana statue

The Avukana statue

Awukana Statue with a roof in 1938

Awukana Statue with a roof in 1938


 Other special places around Awukana

5. Maligavila Buddha Statue

This is a standing statue carved out of a lime stone during the period of king Agbho. This is situated in Maligawila in Monaragala district in Uva province. This statue was lying in dilapidated previously. Thereafter the scattered parts have been assembled and entire statue was erected to the standing position during the period of the former president Mr. R. Premadasa.  This statue also depicts the same features and the sculpture of Awukana and it is said to be that it is in the style of the Amarawathi art school.

Maligavila Buddha Statue

Maligavila Buddha Statue


 
  1. The Statue of Buduruwagala

This is situated at Wellawaya in Monaragala of Uva province. Bururuwagala means statues of Buddha on rock and there are other several statues also can be found which is said to be belonging to the Mahayana School. The historians are of the opinion that these statues belong to the period of 9th or 10th centauries and it is said to be that there was a monastery during that period. The orange colour fleets are the evidence to show that this statue would have been painted in colours. The statue reflects the Amarawathie style with the sign of “abhya mudra”. The special feature of this statue is that it has been carved in to the rock and some parts have been filed with plaster.

The Statue of Buduruwagala

The Statue of Buduruwagala


 

Buddha statue of Buduruwagala

Buddha statue of Buduruwagala


The Buruwagala rock which contains several images of Buddha and Bodhisathwa

Bodhisathwa image of Buduruwagala

Bodhisathwa image of Buduruwagala


7.The Standing Buddha Statue of Weheragala

This is a standing statue with a “siraspatha” on the head. The robe consists of single line fleets and it reflects the “dyana mudra” and in the “weerasana” on a lotus pedestal. The entire statue has been made out of bronze and plated with gold.

The Seated Buddha Statue of Weheragala

The Seated Buddha Statue of Weheragala


 

8.Sasseruwa Buddha Statue

This is a statue carved on a rock situated about 1 km. from the statue of Awukana which is still in incomplete situation. “Although the Abhaya mudra is reflected as in Awukana statue the pedestal is simply a granite slab without any decoration.

Sasseruwa Buddha Statue

Sasseruwa Buddha Statue


 

9.Pankuliya Buddha Statue

This statue is constructed on a dolomite rock which is found to be at the Ashokaramaya temple. This is carved similar to Samadi Statue of Mahamewna Park, however hands of the statue depicts “witharka” mudra and kataka hastha mudra”.

Pankuliya Buddha Statue

Pankuliya Buddha Statue


 

10.Dambegoda Bosath Statue

The statue discovered from Dambegoda is believed to be the statue of Awalokitheshwara Bosath. In this statue, the right hand is in “withrka mudra” and the left hand is in “kataka hastha mudra” is treated as the tallest statue of  Bosath in Sri Lanka.

Dambegoda Bosath Statue

Dambegoda Bosath Statue


11.Bosath Statue of Kustarajagala

This has been carved on a rock in front of the temple of Agrabodhi in Weligama, Matara.  This statue has been treated as one of the Awalokitheswara Bosath as it has been found figures of deities on the crown

Bosath Statue of Kustarajagala

Bosath Statue of Kustarajagala


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12.Bronze Bosath Statue of Weheragala

Rare view

Rare view

Front view

Front view


Bibliography

1′    Culture of Anuradhapura by Prof. A.V. Surawira

Souvenir in commemorating of Centenary Anniversary of Department of Archaeology- vol 5 Dr. Nanadadewa Wijesekara- The Department of Archaeology

 2′   The Art of sculpture and Carvings of Sri Lanka Mohan Nanadaan nanayakkara

3′   Ancient Palaces of Sri Lanka, Malinga Amarasingha, Samanthi Publishers

4′   Saddamangala Karurathna -Felicitation Volume 1 2002 the Deapartment of Archeology

5′   Abhayagiri Temple, T.G.Kulathunaga, Central Cultural Fund

  1. The Heritage of Art of Sculpture in Sri Lanaka by Senarath Wikramasingha –The Department ofNational Mesum

7′   The Kala Sagarawa of Kala Mandlaya Vol 14

  1. Sri Lankan Buddhist Art –Southern Tradition by Gamini Jayasingha, Sarasawi Publisher
  2. Conventional Designs of Paintings by Sarath Anurasiri, Malpiyali Publishers
  3. Conventional designs of sculpture and paintings of temples, Nimal Karunarathna, Malpiyali Publishers
  4. History of Art of Painting, Thilakrathna Diganwela, Wasana Printers
  5. History of Art of Painting, D.M. Ubhayathunga, Malpiyali Publishers
  6. Art of Painting by Thilakrathna Diganwela, Wasana Printers