Buddha with Six Disciples, 3rd-4th century A.D.  Place of origin: Miran, Xinjiang, China

Wall painting. 57.2 x 100.2 cm. 

Fragment of a wall painting from a stupa in Miran. The painting preserves only the bust of the Buddha, looking at the spectators, and gesturing his right hand in giving assurance (abhaya mudra). He wears a red sanghati (unstitched upper-garment) that covers both of his shoulders. On his left, six monks, probably his disciples, are seen. One of them is holding a chowrie. On the left of these monks, a tree is seen with blooming coloured flowers, and against it right arm of a figure is seen holding flowers in the hand. Probably, it is a scene from the conversion of six Sakya Princes. The painting shows strong Hellenistic elements, as strong features of naturalism and picturesqueness can be seen experienced into this wall painting.  

Image details quoted from National Museum, New Delhi. Image source: Aurel Stein, Ruins of desert Cathay - personal narrative of explorations in Central Asia and western most China. Macmillan, London 1912.