Western Tibet, Vairocana

14th-15th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, copper alloy and cold gold , private collection.

14th-15th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, copper alloy and cold gold , private collection.

Vairocana, in his bodhisattva appearance and surrounded with long-stem lotuses, sits in the vajra position on a double-lotus base, his hands in the dharmacakra mudra. He wears a  crown with Kirtimukha on the front panel and his chignon is topped with flaming jewels.

14th-16th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, gilt copper alloy, Museum der Kulturen in Basle (Switzerland).

14th-16th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, gilt copper alloy with pigments, at the Museum der Kulturen in Basle (Switzerland).

On this highly individual example, his celestial scarf (incised with a wavy pattern) forms a frame around him, in the West Tibetan fashion.

13th-14th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, bronze, private collection.

13th-14th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, bronze, private collection.

On all these sculptures, the lower part of the double-lotus base is noticeably broader than the upper part, which helps dating the pieces broadly.

14th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, brass with copper inlay, photo by Christie's

14th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, brass with copper inlay, photo by Christie’s.

This one wears a crown adorned with unusually large bows that stick out on each side, but no upward flowing ribbons. His nails, the hem of his dhoti, his jewellery and crown have been inlaid with copper. His large earrings are inlaid with turquoise. The composition follows an almost perfect triangular outlay.

14th-15th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, copper alloy with copper inlay and pigments, photo by Koller.

14th-15th century, Western Tibet, Vairocana, copper alloy with copper inlay and pigments, photo by Koller.

This is a good example of masterpieces produced in Western Tibet around the 14th century. The buddha wears a tall five-leaf crown with long flowing ribbons, strengthened with wire. He has a tall chignon topped with a finial.  His gentle face with eyes cast down has a serene expression. He sits on a Pala-Style double-lotus base with fleshy apple-like petals and a row of very large beading at the bottom, his hands doing the dharmacakra mudra. He is surrounded with particularly ornate lotuses with scrolled leaves that form a frame.

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