Western Tibet, Vajrasattva (2)

 

12th century, Western Tibet, Vajrasattva, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby's.

12th century, Western Tibet, Vajrasattva, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

Vajrasattva is seated on a lotus over a throne supported by two elephants. He holds an upright vajra sceptre and a bell, and wears a tripartite crown with rosettes that match his armbands, one of which is placed high up on the left forearm. The rest of his accessories includes large floral earrings, a sacred thread, a necklace, plain bracelets and a bulky belt – no anklets.12th-c-western-tibet-vajrasattva-c-a-elephant-throne-216-cm-buddhas-in-headdress-sothebys

There is an effigy of a Amitabha on the central panel of his crown and another on the ornament/finial on top of his chignon.

12th-c-western-tibet-vajrasattva-c-a-elephant-throne-216-cm-dhoti-sothebys

His long dhoti is decorated with bands of incised motifs including large flowers. The petals of the lotus base on which he sits are also incised on the sides and towards the tip, forming a kind of semi heart shape.

12th-13th century, Western Tibet, Vajrasattva, copper alloy with silver and copper inlay, at the Newark Museum (USA)

12th-13th century, Western Tibet, Vajrasattva, copper alloy with silver and copper inlay, at the Newark Museum in New Jersey (USA).

This singular figure, seated on a double-lotus base with small plump petals, holds the bell at the front rather than against or towards the left hip and the vajra sceptre is placed horizontally towards the heart.

12th-13th-c-western-tibet-vajrasattva-c-a-sil-eyescop-lipsnailsstones-455-cm-face-newark

He has silver-inlaid eyes and copper inlay on his lips, nails, the rim of his crown and his dhoti. His jewellery is inlaid with stones. His beautiful face is enhanced by an elaborate five-leaf crown with small rosettes and delicate flowing ribbons. The long strands of hair over his shoulders form large curls.

12th-13th-c-western-tibet-vajrasattva-c-a-sil-eyescop-lipsnailsstones-455-cm-dhoti-newark

The artist has used copper inlay and incisions for the hem of the dhoti and the floral motif on the part that covers the legs. The folds of the garment are gathered under his ankles.

 

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