Shamarpas represent a branch of the Karma Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism.
The above sculpture depicts the second shamarpa who lived during the second half of the 14th century. He wears a richly incised monastic garment and has both hands in the ‘calling Earth to witness ‘ gesture.
Shamarpas sit in the lotus position, wrapped in monastic garments, their head topped with a red crown-like hat with a geometric design at the front (usually a lozenge or three or five circles representing precious jewels, as specified by Jeff Watts on the Himalayan Art Resources website ). They often have their right hand in the bhumisparsha mudra and the left one in the meditation gesture or dhyana mudra, like the historical buddha.
Occasionally the crown is missing but there is often an inscription on the back of the sculpture with information about the portrayed person. The above works shows the 6th shamarpa with his right hand in the gesture of understanding and his left hand resting in his lap.