Symbol of bliss and serenity, Buddha paintings are indeed an excellent choice for hotel lobbies. Reflecting on the hotel’s identity and ethos, these exquisite pieces of art can set the tone for the rest of the hotel right and make a big impact on the overall design. However, with countless artistic renditions available, choosing Buddha paintings to transform the space is not an easy task. Representing the teachings and travel of Lord Buddha, every painting has a specific meaning and purpose, therefore it is critical to have a basic understanding of the physical attributes — hand gestures and postures, featured in the artworks.

To help you we have put together information about the different postures and poses of Lord Buddha commonly depicted in the paintings. It will help you better comprehend the different Buddha paintings and find the one that resonates best with your thoughts and decor theme.

Protection Buddha

Symbolizing protection, courage, peace, and fearlessness, these paintings depict Lord Buddha in Abhay mudra. With the right hand raised to shoulder height, the palm facing outwards, and the fingers extended upright (symbolizing a shield) and the left hand hanging down at the side of the body or extended in the palm, Protection Buddha is painted either sitting or standing.

In Thailand, and especially in Laos, this mudra is associated with a walking Buddha featuring the divine Buddha standing upright, either immobile with the feet joined, or in motion as walking. Representing Buddha placing his footprint, Protection Buddha paintings adorn almost every Thai hotel as well as home.

Apart from being aesthetically pleasing, it is believed that placing Buddha paintings in Abhay mudra at the entrance space keeps disruptive elements at bay. Certainly, a good reason to hang an over-sized Buddha painting at the entrance of your hotel lobbies!

Reclining Buddha

One of the most poignant poses, this mudra features Buddha lying on his right side with his head either resting on a cushion/right elbow or propped on his right elbow supporting his head with his hand. Popularly known as Sleeping or Resting Buddha painting, it is a representation of the final moments of the mortal life of the divine before he achieves Nirvana — freedom from the cycle of rebirth and karma.

Considered an encouragement for people to seek internal harmony, paintings of Reclining Buddha are a great choice to turn the hotel lobbies into a pious zone of tranquility. Consider hanging a Reclining Buddha painting of size more than 38X48 inches above the couch of the lobby.

Meditating Buddha

Depicting Buddha sitting in Dhyana mudra with his legs folded, face-up, eyes closed and hands lying on the lap, Meditating Buddha is the most common representation in Buddhist art. Also, known as the pose of spiritual perfection, this mudra represents the divine meditating under the pipal tree before his enlightenment, and indicate the perfect balance of thought, the rest of the senses, and tranquillity.

Featuring Buddha in a meditative pose, Meditating Buddha paintings are suited to creating quiet relaxing spaces. To further add an aura of serenity to the lobby of your hotel, you can consider lighting a few scented candles and incense sticks.

Bhumisparsha Buddha (Calling the Earth to Witness)

With Bhumisparsha literally translating into 'touching the earth', this pose is more commonly known as the 'earth witness' mudra. Representing the moment of Lord Buddha’s enlightenment, paintings of  Bhumisparsha Buddha are by far the most popular and the most symbolic of Buddhist art.

The legend goes that the demon of illusion (Mara) tried to tempt Gautam Buddha who was meditating for years under a bodhi tree. But Buddha overcame the temptation with his poise and gently touched the ground with his hand to summon the Earth Goddess to witness his attainment of enlightenment. Therefore, this mudra features the divine with all five fingers of the right hand placed upon his right knee and extended to touch the earth, while his left hand lying flat in the lap in the dhyana mudra of meditation symbolizing the union of method and wisdom, and the realizations of the ultimate truths.

No wonder, Bhumisparsha Buddha paintings are a perfect choice to transform the hotel lobbies into calming retreats to unwind and relax.

Praying Buddha

Featuring Buddha with his hands folded in prayer and eyes closed, this mudra represents adoration and faith. Considered ideal for altar or pooja room, Praying Buddha paintings can be used to create an ambiance full of positivity and good vibrations.

Lighting a lamp or candle and placing a small water fountain around a Praying Buddha can further help to sync with its positivity. What’s better than having a lobby adorning a painting of Praying Buddha emanating spiritual vibes!

Read more: Why Buddha Paintings are a must-have for your Home?

Preaching Buddha

Depicting the Dharmachakra mudra, this pose symbolizes one of the most

important moments in the life of the divine wherein he preached his disciples the first sermon after his enlightenment in the Deer Park at Sarnath.

Buddha in this mudra is depicted with the thumb and index finger of his

hands touching at their tips to form a circle held in front of his heart. With this circle representing the Wheel of Dharma (the union of method and wisdom), the teachings coming straight from his heart and setting into motion of the Wheel of the teaching of the Dharma.

An exquisite oversized Preaching Buddha painting behind the hotel reception desk can instantly add grace and elegance to space.

Wrap Up

A better understanding of the postures and gestures of Lord Buddha will help you out on your journey of selecting the best Buddha painting for your hotel — the one that creates a calm and tranquil atmosphere and makes a lasting impression on your guests.

So what are you waiting for? Explore our collection of Buddhist paintings from the finest artists to give your hotel lobby an artsy soul!