The Nara period (710-794 A.D.) in Japan saw the flourishing of Buddhism.
Although Buddhism had entered Japan from China in 518, it was during the
Nara period that its following grew, and that the religion evolved and was
"Japanized" along with other influences from China. Buddhist imagery became
central to Japanese art during this time, and many sculptures were created
to decorate the numerous monasteries being built in the new capital of Nara.