Nepal, Khasa Malla (8)

14th century cir., Nepal, Khasa Malla Kingdom, gilt copper inlaid with turquoise, private collection.

Circa 14th century, Nepal, Khasa Malla Kingdom, bodhisattva Tara, gilt copper inlaid with turquoise, private collection.

Tara is sitting on a tall, Pala-style, double-lotus base with two rows of beading and an extra platform below decorated with an incised pattern and split in half by another row of beading. She wears a richly decorated ankle-length dhoti and is adorned with foliate jewellery, big circular earrings,  a small crown with bows and ribbons. Like her jewellery, the round urna on her forehead is inlaid with turquoise. Her right foot is resting on a lotus flower while the other leg is folded towards her. Both elbows are supporting some wide lotus flowers. What differentiates this work from an Indian Pala sculpture is the smiling facial features, the lavish gilding, the extensive use of turquoise inlay, the extra layer of the base and its incisions, and the slightly different body proportions.

13th-14th century, Nepal, Khasa Malla Kingdom, Prajnaparamita, gilt copper alloy and pigment, published by Ian Alsop.

13th-14th century, Nepal, Khasa Malla Kingdom, Prajnaparamita, gilt copper alloy and pigment, published by Ian Alsop.Prajnaparamita is identified through the manuscripts on the lotuses supported by her elbows. She is portrayed in the Indian Pala style, with a tall chignon, a pointed crown  held with upward flying ribbons, large hoops on her ears,  a slender waist, the upper part of her body slightly tilted to one side. The red paint on the base and the inscription at the front are, however, proper to Khasa Malla sculptures and the lavish gilding is not a feature of Indian Pala works.

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