Tibet, Achala (7)

13th century, Tibet, gilt copper, private collection, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

13th century, Tibet, Achala Nila, gilt copper, is or was at the gTsug Lakhang in Lhasa, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

We have seen in the previous post that Achala occasionally has blue hair instead of  orange/red flaming hair.  On this Nepalese-style work, he brandishes a sword with his right hand and holds a lasso in the other while doing the karana mudra. He wears the skin of a tiger around his hips and is adorned with stone-inlaid princely jewellery (no snakes). This form of Achala is known as Nila or Blue Achala.

This very similar figure, dated a century later, has a stone-inlaid celestial scarf floating around him.

14th c., Tibet, Achala, gilt c.a.+stones, Rubin MoA

14th century, Tibet, Achala, gilt copper alloy, Rubin Museum of Art (USA).

he also wears a kind of sash with raining jewels at the end.

13th century, Tibet, Achala, copper alloy, at the Rubin Museum of Art (USA).

13th century, Tibet, Achala, copper alloy, at the Rubin Museum of Art (USA).

In contrast, this is a contemporary yet archaic sculpture, with a type of pedestal rarely seen in Tibet and possibly inspired by much earlier works from the Swat Valley or Kashmir area. There are traces of red pigment on the flaming arch around him.

14th century, Tibet, Achala, copper alloy, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

14th century, Tibet, Achala, copper alloy, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

This  Achala stands on Shiva and Ganapati over an Indian Pala-style pedestal. He brandishes a sword in his right hand and holds a noose in the other. He wears a tiger skin dhoti and a thin scarf.

14th c., Tibet, Achala, brass+pig., close up

There is a small buddha in his headdress and a cobra (naga) around his hair. He also wears a long snake tied across his chest as a sacred cord.

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