Zhang Huan, China

In front of City Hall
(1 of 7) (6469 views)

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The gigantic 26-foot tall (7.8 meters high) sculpture weighed a whopping 15 tons (13.6 tonnes). This is a new sculpture, first premiered here.


"Three Heads, 6 Arms"   •  Artist Zhang Huan external link of China   •  Civic Center plaza, San Francisco, California   •  (Photo posted Saturday 15 May 2010)   •  (Photo taken 13:26:02 Wednesday 12 May 2010)   •  © 2010 Bryan Costales Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License #132602_4569BCX
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Six Arms
(2 of 7) (3655 views)

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The six arms each have a bracelet on the wrist and the upper arm near the shoulder. The upper arm bracelets were the attachment points where each arm was mounted to the body.


"Three Heads, 6 Arms"   •  Artist Zhang Huan external link of China   •  Civic Center plaza, San Francisco, California   •  (Photo posted Saturday 15 May 2010)   •  (Photo taken 13:26:50 Wednesday 12 May 2010)   •  © 2010 Bryan Costales Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License #132650_4571BCX
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Hands held flowers
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All but one of the six hands each held a metal representation of a lotus flower external link. Perhaps the hand without the flower represents Mahakashyapa.


"Three Heads, 6 Arms"   •  Artist Zhang Huan external link of China   •  Civic Center plaza, San Francisco, California   •  (Photo posted Saturday 15 May 2010)   •  (Photo taken 13:27:20 Wednesday 12 May 2010)   •  © 2010 Bryan Costales Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License #132720_4573BCX
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Detail of the body
(4 of 7) (3562 views)

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The body was one of three points that supported the entire sculpture. The location of the sculpture in the plaza was limited to this one place because the statue was so heavy and the plaza over a parking garage was not strong enough except here.


"Three Heads, 6 Arms"   •  Artist Zhang Huan external link of China   •  Civic Center plaza, San Francisco, California   •  (Photo posted Saturday 15 May 2010)   •  (Photo taken 13:27:48 Wednesday 12 May 2010)   •  © 2010 Bryan Costales Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License #132748_4576BCX
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Three heads
(5 of 7) (3608 views)

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The three heads and three arms on a single body represent the concept of Trikaya in Buddhist teachings. The doctrine says that Buddha has three kaya or bodies that individually represent: time and space; bliss or clear light; and enlightenment.


"Three Heads, 6 Arms"   •  Artist Zhang Huan external link of China   •  Civic Center plaza, San Francisco, California   •  (Photo posted Saturday 15 May 2010)   •  (Photo taken 13:27:56 Wednesday 12 May 2010)   •  © 2010 Bryan Costales Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License #132756_4577BCX
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Not religious
(6 of 7) (3604 views)

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Although the sculpture was inspired by the many artifacts of Buddhist beliefs, the sculpture itself was meant to represent merely harmony. This sculpture was made of copper, the same material often used for fabricating Buddhist sculpture in Tibet and India.


"Three Heads, 6 Arms"   •  Artist Zhang Huan external link of China   •  Civic Center plaza, San Francisco, California   •  (Photo posted Saturday 15 May 2010)   •  (Photo taken 13:28:30 Wednesday 12 May 2010)   •  © 2010 Bryan Costales Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License #132830_4579BCX
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No signs
(7 of 7) (3599 views)

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This photo was taken the afternoon following the morning that the sculpture was dedicated. Yet there was no sign anywhere which identified it or its artist. A 2x4 wooden frame nailed to the concrete formed a box around the sculpture, but that was all.


"Three Heads, 6 Arms"   •  Artist Zhang Huan external link of China   •  Civic Center plaza, San Francisco, California   •  (Photo posted Saturday 15 May 2010)   •  (Photo taken 13:28:46 Wednesday 12 May 2010)   •  © 2010 Bryan Costales Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License #132846_4580BCX
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