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A Buddhist lama of the Kagyu order
Place of Origin: Central Tibet
Date: 1400-1500
Materials: Gilded copper
Dimensions: H. 11 1/4 in x W. 8 3/4 in x D. 6 1/4 in, H. 28.6 cm x W. 22.2 cm x D. 15.9 cm
Credit Line: Gift of the Connoisseurs' Council with assistance from Vicki Shiba
Department: Himalayan Art
Collection: Sculpture
Object Number: 2003.8
On Display: No

Description

Label:

This cheerful-looking lama sits in meditation with his right hand raised in the gesture of religious discussion and his left hand—around which is wound a string of prayer beads—in the gesture of meditation. His left hand also once held an object, and judging from the shape and height of the rubbed area on his belly, this object may have been a vase containing the elixir of eternal life.

The engraving on this monk's garment features elaborate ornamentation; his thick cloak, which covers his knees, has a border engraved with lotus blossoms, along with an overall design incorporating six of the seven Tibetan Buddhist "precious gems": rhinoceros horns, elephant tusks, king's earrings, queen's earrings, crossed jewels, and auspicious clouds (the omitted gem is the coral branch). The lama wears a hat with upturned flaps, one that is common to several branches of the Kagyu Order of Tibetan Buddhism.

The figure's face is not rendered in the conventional style but seems instead to represent that of an actual lama. Without an inscription or identifying attribute, however, it is impossible to identify the person upon whom the depiction was based.


More Information

Exhibition History: "Sights Unseen: Recent Acquisitions", Tateuchi Gallery, September 2, 2006 - March 25, 2007
Label:

This cheerful-looking lama sits in meditation with his right hand raised in the gesture of religious discussion and his left hand—around which is wound a string of prayer beads—in the gesture of meditation. His left hand also once held an object, and judging from the shape and height of the rubbed area on his belly, this object may have been a vase containing the elixir of eternal life.

The engraving on this monk's garment features elaborate ornamentation; his thick cloak, which covers his knees, has a border engraved with lotus blossoms, along with an overall design incorporating six of the seven Tibetan Buddhist "precious gems": rhinoceros horns, elephant tusks, king's earrings, queen's earrings, crossed jewels, and auspicious clouds (the omitted gem is the coral branch). The lama wears a hat with upturned flaps, one that is common to several branches of the Kagyu Order of Tibetan Buddhism.

The figure's face is not rendered in the conventional style but seems instead to represent that of an actual lama. Without an inscription or identifying attribute, however, it is impossible to identify the person upon whom the depiction was based.


Exhibition History: "Sights Unseen: Recent Acquisitions", Tateuchi Gallery, September 2, 2006 - March 25, 2007