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Georgetown-IDP Lecture Series | The Many Lives of a Buddhist Devotional Print: A Dated Dunhuang Document in the Royal Ontario Museum Collection
August 4, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Part of the Georgetown-IDP Lecture Series: Following the Silk Roads to North America
This is an online event hosted on Zoom. Bookers are sent a link in advance giving access.
In 1927 the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) in Toronto, Canada, acquired a single printed sheet from the Dunhuang cave library in what is now Gansu province, China. A votive print of the Buddhist deity Avalokiteśvara commissioned in 947 CE by the ruler of Dunhuang, the ROM print remains the only Dunhuang document in a Canadian public institution and serves as an important material artefact of the types of Buddhist patronage and practice that flourished along the old Silk Roads. Nearly a century later, scholars have identified more than 30 whole, partial, and compound paper artefacts related to the ROM Dunhuang print scattered in museums, libraries, and private collections around the world. This talk examines this unique set of Buddhist commemorative objects, and explores how modern research and scientific analysis can shed light on the history of these 1000-year-old prints.
Dr Amanda Goodman is Assistant Professor of Chinese Buddhism in the Department for the Study of Religion at the University of Toronto. A specialist of the medieval period, her work focuses on the development of regional Chinese Buddhist ritual forms at Dunhuang.