Gorinto (5-tiered stupa) sculpted from a single piece of a composite-type tuff, an igneous stone formed primarily from volcanic ash. Kamakura Period ca. 1300. Old surface pitting and overall erosion notwithstanding, the 5-part formal structure remains intact and clearly discernible. Good lichen accumulation.
Height: 58 cm
Packaged weight: 30 kg.
The gorinto is a uniquely Japanese style of stupa comprising five geometric forms, which correspond (from bottom) to earth, water, fire, wind, and ethereal space. The Japanese Shingon sect of esoteric Buddhism views the gorinto as a symbol of Dai-Nichi Buddha, who, underlying all things, manifests himself in the five elements making up the physical world.
With a bottom surface sculpted not flatly but rather tapered for easy insertion into the soil, this atmospheric gorinto hails from Oita Prefecture's Kunisaki Peninsula, esteemed by Japanese collectors for the depth and quality of its sculptural tradition in stone.