Kashmir, various bodhisattvas

10th century, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, bronze with silver inlay, at the Nelson Atkins Museum in Kansas City (USA).

Avalokiteshvara, in his padmapani form, has traces of cold gold on his face and blue pigment in his hair, indicating that the image was worshipped in Tibet. The image displays various elements which differ from Kashmiri standards, such as the absence of marked pectorals, a very thin waist, a sash across his chest, a broader and shorter halo.

The deity has an effigy of Amitabha in his headdress.

11th century, Kashmir, possibly Manjushri in his Kumara form, brass with silver and copper inlay, published by Dr Ajay Kumar Singh.

This bodhisattva has four hands in which he holds a trident, a lotus topped with a book and a water pot, the remaining one does the gesture of supreme generosity. He is adorned with a tripartite crown, jewellery and a celestial scarf with fluttering ends shaped like flowers.

11th-13th century, Kashmir, Amoghapasha, bronze with silver inlay, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

Amoghapasha, in his one-head and six-hand form, stands on a lotus with thick petals shaped like hooves, a two-piece flaming mandorla behind him, a foliate garland around his neck.

One of his right hands does the gesture of generosity, the others hold a vajra and a vajra-handled hammer. One of his left hands is placed on his hip, the others hold a bell and a noose – his distinctive attribute  (pasha). His eyes are inlaid with silver. His cruciform navel and lobed abdomen are typical of Kahmiri metal sculptures but one would expect marked pectorals and nipples. His facial features, with wide-open eyes and generous lips, are reminiscent of Tibetan art.

 

 

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Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara – standing (2)

Undated, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, copper alloy, published on http://www.huntingtonarchive.org.

The bodhisattva of compassion stands on a lotus over a stepped plinth with a two-piece flaming mandorla, wearing a dhoti shorter on one side and with pointed ends, a pleated celestial scarf with the tips fanning out, large earrings, a beaded necklace and a sacred thread. His right hand displays the gesture of supreme generosity, the other holds the stem of a fully open lotus. This form of Avalokiteshvara usually has an effigy of Amitabha in his headdress, presently missing.

Circa 1000, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, brass (copper) alloy, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

According to the inscription on the base, this masterpiece once belonged to prince Nagaraja from the Guge kindgom (Western Tibet). His right hand does the fear-allaying gesture.

His eyes are inlaid with silver. There is a small effigy of Amitabha on the central panel of his crown, made of three triangular panels. He is adorned with floral earrings and beaded accessories including a belt with a floral buckle.

 

Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara – seated (3)

10th century, Kashmir, Lokeshvara, brass, at the Brooklyn Museum (USA).

This six-hand form of Avalokiteshvara holds a rosary and a vajra held to his heart in two of his right hands while the other displays the gesture of generosity. The top left hand holds a hook, the middle one a water pot, and the lower one the stem of a lotus. There is an effigy of Amitabha in his headdress and an antelope skin over his left shoulder. He sits with a leg pendant, on a lotus with a cylindrical base, over a stepped plinth with a small kneeling figure (devotee or donor) and a large flaming mandorla (with U-shaped flames on the halo often seen on works from Jammu and Kashmir).

11th century, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, brass, at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York (USA).

A similar iconography, with two female attendants.

Undated, Kashmir, Swat Valley style, chaturbhuja Avalokiteshvara, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

A rare four-armed form of the deity, holding a rosary, a lotus and a missing attribute, the lower right hand displaying the gesture of generosity. He sits on a Swat Valley style lotus base with a devotee, possibly the donor, fastened to the rocky formation below.

 

Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara – seated (2)

8th-9th century, Kashmir, Rakta Lokeshvara (Vajradharma), bronze, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

This striking sculpture depicts Avalokiteshvara in his vajradharma Lokeshvara form, seated in the vajra position on a double-lotus with elongated petals, atop a stepped plinth with a peacock at the front. Behind him, a very ornate flaming arch with a stupa and a sun+moon finial.

Avalokiteshvara has a large effigy of Amitabha in his headdress, an antelope skin over his left shoulder and a long garland of flowers around his neck. His eyes are inlaid with silver but not the urna, which is incised, like the nipples. The broad ribbons of the crown and the delicate face with a sharp nose and tiny mouth are typical of early Kashmiri brass sculptures.

This form of the deity plucks, with the right hand, a lotus bud held in the other.

The sculpture may have from the same workshop as another brass item from Kashmir published in a previous post called ‘Deity with Lasso’ (see below).

13th century, Kashmir, Amoghasiddhi, brass, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

It was labelled 13th century, Kashmir, Amoghasiddhi but it doesn’t correspond to the iconography for that deity and the date may be earlier too.

Kashmir, Manjushri – seated

11th century, Kashmir, Manjushri, copper alloy, photo by Polyauctions.

11th century, Kashmir, Manjushri, copper alloy, photo by Polyauctions.

The bodhisattva of wisdom is seated with a leg pendant, on a Swat Valley style double lotus base over a plain plinth, brandishing his sword and holding a manuscript against his heart. He has Kashmiri facial features and graceful body proportions.

Undated (11th century circa) Kashmir (or Kashmir style in Western Himalayas), Manjushri, copper with cold gold and pigments, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

Undated (11th century circa) Kashmir, Manjushri, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

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On this variant, the manuscript is on a blue lotus to his left. He has silver-inlaid eyes, cold gold and pigments on his face, lapis lazuli powder in his hair, indicating that the statue was worshipped in Tibet at some stage.

On both sculptures the sword is tipped with a half-vajra.

Undated, Kashmir, Manjushri, brass, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

Undated, Kashmir, Manjushri, brass, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

This is a rare form of Manjushri, with two hands and four heads, seated on a Pala-style double lotus base with large beading and plump petals (a design reminiscent of 14th century circa Tibetan works). He holds the stem of blue lotuses, each supporting a manuscript.

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The heads are semi-wrathful and adorned with a low tiara, his hands are held in the meditation gesture.

Kashmir – deity with lasso

13th century, Kashmir, Amoghasiddhi, brass, private collection, photo by Christie's.

13th century, Kashmir  labelled Amoghasiddhi, brass, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

If this is Amoghasiddhi, it is a surprising image as this buddha normally has his left hand in the dhyana mudra, the other in the abhaya mudra, and his mount is the garuda. This very rare work could depict Amoghapasha holding a lasso  or pasha (his main attribute), but the one-head and two-hand form of this deity normally has the right hand extended palm out and the other in a gesture proper to him (the tip of the ring finger pressed against the tip of the thumb, palm out).

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The deity is seated in the vajra position, adorned with a three-leaf crown with large bows and ribbons and a long garland of flowers reminiscent of West Tibetan works. The one-piece mandorla with ornate flames and a stupa at the top is very similar to one we have seen on an 11th-12th century Tara from Himachal Pradesh, kept at the British Museum.

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The rearing horse at the front of the throne is extremely rare.

Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara – standing

10th century, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, copper alloy, at the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena (USA).

10th century, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, copper alloy, at the Norton Simon Art Foundation in Pasadena (USA).

Avalokiteshvara in his padmapani form stands on a lotus over a plinth, his right hand in the fear-allaying gesture, the other holding the stem of a (broken) lotus flower, his hair tied in a fan shape, an effigy of Amitabha at the front. He has an antelope skin over his left shoulder, no crown or jewellery. His lower garment is much shorter on one side and decorated with an incised geometrical pattern.

 

11th century, Kashmir or Western Tibet, Avalokiteshvara, brass, private collection, photo by Christie's.

11th century, Kashmir or Kashmiri artist in Western Tibet, Avalokiteshvara, brass, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

On this example, the flaming halo behind him is topped with a finial and flowing ribbons.

11th c., Kashmir or WT, Avalokiteshvara, brass, 33,7 cm, close up, Christie's

The bodhisattva has a diamond incised in the palm of his hand with a lotus at the centre, an antelope skin  knotted across his chest, an effigy of Amitabha in his headdress.

11th c., Kashmir or WT, Avalokiteshvara, brass, 33,7 cm, dhoti, Christie's

He wears a dhoti shorter on one side and decorated with an incised and stippled motif, a beaded belt and a flat celestial scarf.

11th century, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, brass, private collection, published by Dr Ajay Kumar Singh.

11th century, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, brass, private collection, published by Dr Ajay Kumar Singh.

This fine example, once belonging to a West Tibetan prince, shows him adorned with a necklace, large floral earrings, some bangles, a foliate garland and a sash across his chest.

11th-12th century, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, brass, photo by Lempertz.

11th-12th century, Kashmir, Avalokiteshvara, brass, photo by Lempertz.

This  figure (including its plain halo and low pedestal) is very similar to a Vajrasattva at the British Museum published recently and labelled 15th century Kashmir. The facial features and crown are reminiscent of West Tibetan or West Himalayan works from the 10th to the 12th century but the plain halo and garland point to a later date. The round object in the palm of his right hand may be a gem (but more likely an embossed lotus).

Same as before, at a Berlin museum.

Same as before, at the museum of Asian art in Berlin.

This one has a large buddha (Amitabha) in his headdress.