Tibet, lamas on throne (2)

13th century circa, Tibet, Kagyu lama, brass, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

This character is seated on a lotus over a stepped throne covered with a cloth and supported by two lions and decorated with a vajra sceptre and scrolls at the front.

Same, with silver and copper inlay, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

This lama with a powerful jaw is portrayed in a similar way but the seams of his patched robe and his vest are inlaid with silver. He sits on the same type of throne …

covered with a cloth inlaid with silver and copper.

13th century, Tibet, lama, gilt copper alloy, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

These thrones supporting lamas were very popular in 13th and 14th century Tibet and often decorated with tiny coral and stone cabochons, as above. It is worth remembering that these sculptures are very small (about 9 cm for the previous two and 14 cm for this one), which makes them all the more remarkable.

13th-14th century, Tibet, lama, copper alloy with silver and copper inlay, stone and coral, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

The upper part of this throne is inlaid with silver, copper and stones; the cloth is decorated with coral and stone cabochons, and a strip of copper with a chased geometrical motif.  There is an horizontal vajra sceptre at the front of the last but one tier and some scrolled lotuses above.

The artist has used silver for the eyes and the beaded seams of the clothes, and copper for the seams and the incised edges.

13th-14th century, Tibet, lama, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

Here there is an upright vajra sceptre at the front and incised diamonds around the upper edge, no metal or stone inlay.

14th century, Tibet, Kagyu lama, copper alloy with copper and stone inlay, is or was at the Jokhang in Lhasa, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

Yet another style, with two lions and a yaksha on a cut-out background, the columns and rims decorated with incised and copper-inlaid geometrical shapes and stone-inlaid visvjaras. The copper hem on the lama’s robe has a stippled floral motif. He sports a very ostentatious hat painted with pigments.

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