Avalokiteshvara, anonymous, 870 - 930
As a sign of their importance, Buddhist deities were sometimes depicted in gold and silver. The Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, here in silver, is revered as a powerful helper in the lives of ordinary people. He is shown in deep contemplation of the world. The heavenly Buddha Vairocana, here in gold, holds his hands in the bodhyagrimudra, the hand gesture of highest insight.