Tibet, famous lamas (8)

14th century, Tibet, Gyergom Tsultrim Sengge, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

An inscription on the base reads ‘homage to the great Gyer’ (from the Gyer clan in the Yarlung Valley). Gyergom Tsultrim Sengge (1144-1204) founded the Shukseb Monastery and the Shukseb Kagyu lineage.

14th century circa, Tibet, Jagchen Kunga Pelzangpo, same as before.

An inscription on the base says ‘homage to Jagchen Kunga Pelzangpo’, a 14th century lama, leader of the Shang order.


15th century, Tibet, Lhatsun Choje, copper alloy with silver inlay, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

This deified Kagyu lama, identified through an inscription on the back, holds the stem of lotuses that support a manuscript and the hilt of a sword, the right hand does the teaching gesture and the other holds a long-life vase.

He is seated on a throne supported by elephants and lions and decorated with a seated figure holding a bell and a lotus.

The back of his garment is decorated with an incised floral pattern.

17th century, Tibet, Nyangrel Nyima Oser, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

Seated on an animal skin (tiger or leopard) over a single lotus base, dressed in voluminous silk garments, Nyangrel Nyima Oser, from the Nyingma order, does the fear-allaying gesture with one hand and supports a medicine jar with the other. His Chinese-style clothing reflects 17th century fashion but he actually lived during the 12th century and is famous for being the first of 5 ‘Sovereign Treasurer’ revealers, discovering the location of hidden Buddhist treasures (texts, statues, ritual weapons, medicines etc.).

17th century, Tibet, Naza Dragpugpa Sonam Pel, same as before.

This jovial lama does a gesture to ward off evil (karana mudra) with his left hand while his right hand looks as if it once supported a vajra sceptre. His patched garments are decorated with a chased floral pattern on some of the hems and seams. An inscription on the back says ‘prostrate to Drakpukpa’, a Tibetan teacher who lived between 1277 and 1350 circa and is famous for receiving and transmitting the lamdre teachings.

17th century, Tibet, Ngagwang Lobzang Tanpa’l Gyaltsen, gilt metal, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

This lama, born in the region of Amdo, is thought to be a reincarnation of Milarepa and is thus depicted like Milarepa.


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