Tibet, lama Zhang

13th century, Tibet, Zhang Yudragpa Tsöndru Dragpa, copper alloy, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources

13th century, Tibet, Zhang Yudragpa Tsöndru Dragpa, copper alloy, private collection.

Zhang Yudragpa Tsöndru Dragpa (1122-1193), most commonly known as ‘Lama Zhang’ and considered as one of the great religious leaders of Tibet by some and as a controversial one by others, is portrayed as a sturdy man, seated in the lotus position, wearing patched monastic garments, one hand over his knee, the other in the meditation gesture. He has a joyful face with high cheekbones and small smiling eyes.

Undated, Tibet, lama Zhang, copper alloy, private collection.

Undated, Tibet, lama Zhang, copper alloy, private collection.

The absence of a lotus base or an inscription makes it difficult to date this sculpture but the obvious ware of the gilding, the thick dark copper or copper alloy metal, the roundness of the shapes all point to an early work (i.e. pre-15th century).

14th century, Tibet, brass, photo by Mokotof Gallery.

14th century, Tibet, copper alloy, published by Mokotoff Gallery.

This is another portrait of a powerful character, still smiling, dressed in much the same way as on the previous picture, his hands in the same position. This time he is seated on a double-lotus base with wide apple-like petals typical of 13th-14th century Tibetan works.

 

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