Nepal, Vajrapani+Vajra Anuchara

8th century, Nepal, Vajrapani with Vajra Anuchara, gilt copper alloy, at the Cleveland Museum of Art (USA).

8th century, Nepal, Vajrapani with Vajra Anuchara, copper with traces of cold gold and pigment, at the Cleveland Museum of Art (USA).

This is one of a few sculptures depicting Vajrapani in his peaceful form with his left hand placed on the head of his attendant, Vajra Anuchara, who crosses his arms over his chest. Sometimes described as his son, Vajra Anuchara is understood by some to be a deity of Hindu origin and the personification of Vajrapani’s thunderbolt, while others see him as a Buddhist deity and the embodiment of his power to convert the enemies of dharma to buddhism. These metal sculptures appeared in Nepal during the Licchavi period and then in Tibet, under the influence of Nepalese artists. On this singular example, Vajrapani holds the vajra against his heart. His hair, dyed with lapis lazuli powder, is tied in a bunch that cascades to one side and is adorned with a lotus flower. This spectacular arrangement is counterbalanced by the tall leaf-panel of his crown on the other side. His bulky jewellery contrasts with his slender body, typical of the Licchavi period. His sacred cord goes down his left side then passes under the sash and reaches to his right knee. His incised dhoti, much longer on one side, is held in place with a belt. The elegant zig-zag shape at the front ends in a sharp point that touches the lotus base. The thick sash knotted across his hips is folded against his leg and the soft draping also reaches the pedestal.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s