Past Exhibitions

Buddhist Gongs and Bells
December 19, 2017 - January 28, 2018

Various instruments are associated with the practices and rituals of Buddhism. These might be used to mark important junctures in Buddhist rituals, to keep rhythms, to announce certain times of the day or the arrival of guests at temples, or various other uses. Itinerant priests would jangle the loose rings their staffs while on pilgrimage, as sort of ritual noisemakers. Many of these Buddhist instruments are gongs or bells made of bronze, which resound when struck with solemn, reverberating peals. This exhibition features early examples of metal Buddhist percussion instruments including shōko, waniguchi, and kei gongs as well as jangling priests’ staffs (shakujō).

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