Tibet, wrathful Vajrapani (2)

As we have seen in a previous post, the wrathful aspect (krodha) of Vajrapani exists under various forms. The most common one-head two-hand form is itself divided into several categories, depending on what he holds in his left hand or how he holds it.

13th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, copper alloy with cold gold and pigment, on gg-art.com.

13th century, Tibet, Canda Vajrapani (labelled Nilambara), copper alloy with cold gold and pigment, on gg-art.com.

He may have his left hand in a gesture or mudra with the index pointing upwards (tarjani mudra) or the index and little finger upward (karana mudra). This form is sometimes labelled Nilambara or Nilamba dhara but is in fact the Canda form. According to the scriptures, the former depicts him with a bell against his left hip as on the works below, the 8 snake ornaments, no skull crown or garland of severed heads, but a garuda in his headdress (which is not on any of them)

12th-13th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, copper alloy, on gg-art.com.

12th-13th century (or later copy?), Tibet, Vajrapani, gilt copper alloy, pigment, turquoise, on gg-art.com.

This sculpture shows him with his flaming hair fastened with a couple of cobras and a buddha in his headdress, his left hand in tarjani mudra.

13th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, copper alloy with lapis lazuli inlay and pigment, on gg-art-com.

13th century (or later copy), Tibet, Vajrapani, copper alloy with lapis lazuli inlay and pigment, on gg-art-com.

15th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, gilt copper alloy with turquoise inlay, private collection.

15th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, gilt copper with turquoise inlay, private collection.

16th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, gilt copper alloy and pigment, at Musée Guimet (Paris).

16th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, gilt copper alloy and pigment, at Musée Guimet (Paris).

16th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, copper alloy, photo by Sotheby's.

16th century, Tibet, Vajrapani, copper alloy, cold gold, stone inlay, photo by Sotheby’s.

In a previous post, we saw a 16th century wrathful Vajrapani wearing a robe instead of the usual tiger skin loin cloth. This Chinese-style one is wearing the tiger skin plus an open robe and a cross-belt.

 

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