A THANGKA OF RATNASAMBHAVA TIBET, 15TH CENTURY
Lot 3023
A THANGKA OF RATNASAMBHAVA
TIBET, 15TH CENTURY
Sold for US$ 250,000 inc. premium

Lot Details
A Private European Collection of Tibetan Thangkas
A THANGKA OF RATNASAMBHAVA TIBET, 15TH CENTURY A THANGKA OF RATNASAMBHAVA TIBET, 15TH CENTURY A THANGKA OF RATNASAMBHAVA TIBET, 15TH CENTURY
A THANGKA OF RATNASAMBHAVA
TIBET, 15TH CENTURY
Distemper on cloth; with later cloth mounts.
Himalayan Art Resources item no.58526
31 1/4 x 23 3/4 in. (79.5 x 60 cm)

Footnotes

  • 西藏 十五世紀 寶生佛唐卡

    The beautiful painting of Ratnasambhava exerts a strong presence and sense of ascendancy. His firm yet delicate right-hand reaches down in the boon-granting gesture that conquers miserliness, while his left hand is leveled in the gesture of balanced equanimity that overcomes pride. Ratnasambhava wears elaborate jewelry, a short dhoti, and a shawl that wraps around his chest and then drapes across his left arm. The harmony of colors and attention to shading attest to the ingenious techniques informed by Pala art and continued in Tibet.

    Huntington and Bangdel eloquently explain the purpose of illustrating Tathagatas:

    "The ultimate and transcendent state of Buddhahood, Dharma-body (dharmakaya), is inconceivable to those who have not experienced enlightenment. Thus, Buddhas emanate an array of physical forms, both corporeal and subtly visionary, to lead others to the same realization. The bliss-body, or enjoyment body (sambhogakaya), is a way in which the essence and facets of Buddhahood may be conceptualized and depicted in art."

    (Huntington & Bangdel Circle of Bliss, Columbus, 2003, p.90.)

    Ratnasambhava sits against a double-tiered throne back, placed in front of stylized foliage and supported by horses. Two makaras initiate the upper rail of the throne back with their golden tails swirling up along the sides of the aureole. The vyalas on the side of the throne overlap with the hands of the two bodhisattvas Suryagarbha and Candragarbha, who are dressed in long transparent silk trousers. Both attendants are depicted with the cross-body shawl, attire usually reserved only for Tathagatas.

    At the center of the lower register are the three figures who guard the southerly directions: Yama riding the buffalo, Neiruta riding a man, and the guardian king (lokapala) Virudhaka. Four further wrathful protector deities are illustrated on the corners of the bottom register.

    Compare the incorporation of triple-jewel (triratna) and Tara roundels in the central figure's lower garment with a related example in the Metropolitan Museum of Art published in Kossak & Casey, Sacred Visions, New York, 1998, p.107, no.23c.; and a thangka of Akshobhya published in Pal, Himalayas, Chicago, 2003, p.206, no.134.

    Provenance
    David Tremayne Ltd, London, 30 June 1987
    Private European Collection
Activities
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