Tibet, Maitreya (6)

12th-13th century, Tibet or Nepal, Maitreya, brass with silver and copper inlay, private collection, photo on VAN HAM

Maitreya, holding a water pot in the palm of his left hand and the stem of a blue lotus in the other, his eyes inlaid with silver, the festoons of his belt, his armlets and sacred cord made of silver beading, his lips inlaid with copper. His stupa-shaped chignon is topped with a lotus bud finial.

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, bronze with silver, copper and stone inlay, private collection, photo on Hardt

Probably made in a Tsang province atelier, this sculpture depicts him seated in the vajra position, his hands turning the wheel of dharma symbolically and holding the stem of lotuses, one of them supporting a ritual water pot.  He has a stupa in his headdress.

His eyes are inlaid with silver and copper, his jewellery with lapis lazuli and turquoise cabochons.

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper with stone inlay, private collection?, photo on GG-ART

16th-17th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze with cold gold, stones and pigment, private collection, photo by Van Ham as before, sale 17th December 2017.

With no stupa or kundika, Maitreya is identified by the position of his hands.

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper alloy with stone and glass inlay, private collection, photo by Koller, sale A189AS.

Seated with his legs pendent, the feet placed on a lotus attached to the throne.

 

Advertisements

Tibet, Maitreya – seated (19)

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, brass (with cold gold and pigments), at the Zhol village museum in Lhasa (Tibet), photo by Petra Mueller on WHAV.

Maitreya in his bodhisattva appearance, seated with his legs locked, his right hand holding a flower and doing the gesture of debate/teaching, the other hand holding the stem of a lotus that supports a ritual water pot (kundika).

15th-16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, bronze with silver-inlaid eyes, private collection, photo on Nagel

The ashoka tree branch on the lotus placed to his right is another attribute associated with this bodhisattva.

16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt metal with stone inlay, is or was at the gTsug Lakhang in Lhasa (Tibet), published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

On this Nepalese-style work the ritual pot is placed on the lotus to his right and he does the ‘turning the wheel of dharma‘ gesture with his hands. The lower rim of the base is decorated with a chased motif.

16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt metal, at the Newark Museum (USA).

One of a series of works depicting Maitreya seated with a leg pendent, doing the same gesture with his hands, his matted hair piled into a chignon topped with a finial, a stupa at the front instead of a crown.

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt metal, private collection, photo on HAR

Seated in the ‘European fashion’, his hands as before but further apart, a dharma wheel, another of his attributes, decorating the front of his crown.

Tibet, seated Maitreya – European fashion (2)

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper (and turquoise inlay), private collection, photo on Sotheby’s

Maitreya in his bodhisattva appearance, seated with both legs pendent on a throne supported by lions and decorated with flaming jewels, his hands ‘turning the wheel of the law’, his feet resting on lotuses stemming from the base.

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper alloy with turquoise and lapis lazuli, private collection, photo by Andrew Lau on Hollywood Galleries

The same, holding the stem of blue lotuses that support his ritual water pot (kundika) on his left and a stupa on his right.

18th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo on Cambiaste

An interesting variant with a wheel on the lotus to his right and a kundika on the other side, his chignon topped with a crescent moon, sun disc and dissolution point symbol.

16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, bronze, private collection, photo by Nagel, auction 736 China 3.

16th-17th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze, private collection, photo on Nagel

As buddha of the future, his feet placed on a lotus base before the throne, dressed in a silk garment that covers both shoulders.

Undated, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt metal with turquoise inlay, private collection, photo on Himalayan Art Resources, item 2706.

Tibet, seated Maitreya (18)

14th-15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with stone inlay, private collection, photo by Kapoor Galleries

Maitreya seated with his legs locked, his hands doing the teaching and the meditation gesture, the lotus to his right supporting a ritual water pot (kundika)

15th century (Tibet), Maitreya, gilt bronze, private collection, photo by Polyauction https://www.polyauction.com.hk.

The kundika is normally on the lotus to his left, as above.

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, bronze (copper alloy) with silver and turquoise inlay, private collection, photo by Nagel.

Maitreya, with a stupa finial on his head, his hands setting the wheel of dharma into motion and holding the stem of an open lotus supporting a water pot on his left and another lotus topped with a round jewel on his right. We can see Kirtimukha at the front of his crown. His eyes are inlaid with silver and his urna with turquoise. The throne is decorated with elephants and an upright vajra, associated with Akshobhya.

16th century, Central Tibet, Tsang province, gilt bronze with silver and copper inlaid eyes, part of a set of eight bodhisattvas, private collection, photo on Christie’s

The above has a stupa in his headdress. His attributes, a ritual water pot and possibly an ashoka tree branch, appear to be on a flaming jewel.

16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo on Koller

When seated in the vajra position and flanked by lotuses, the one on the right often holds the branch of an ashoka tree as above.

16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Bonhams

Maitreya with blue lotuses, one of them supporting a tiny water pot.

16th century, Tibet or Nepal, Maitreya (labelled Avalokiteshvara), bronze, private collection, photo by Cambiaste

Seated at royal ease, flanked by blue lotuses, a stupa in his headdress.

18th c., Tibet, Maitreya, c.a.+cold g.+pig., 16,8 cm, kundika, Pala revival, auction 1044 Lempertz

18th century, Tibet, Maitreya, copper alloy with cold gold and pigment, gold and silver inlay, private collection, photo on Lempertz

An eye-catching Pala-revival work depicting Maitreya without any jewellery, his matted hair piled in a chignon adorned with miniature stupas, dressed in a long dhoti with gold and silver inlaid dots.

16th-17th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze with stones and enamel, at the Dallas Museum of Art (USA).

Tibet, Maitreya – various postures (2)

13th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo on Cambiaste

Maitreya in his buddha appearance, seated with both legs pendent, his feet resting on a lotus placed before the throne, his hands ‘turning the wheel of dharma‘.

14th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper alloy with turquoise and glass replacement cabochons, private collection, photo on Bonhams

In his bodhisattva appearance, doing a variant of the hand gesture.

14th-15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper with turquoise and glass replacement cabochons, private collection, photo on Koller

From around the 15th century he often sits with his legs apart, and sometimes bent .

13th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo on Bonhams

On rare occasions he sits at royal ease with the left leg pendent, his foot supported by a lotus attached to the rim of the lotus base.

The flower to his left supports a ritual water pot (kundika), one of his main attributes.

14th century, Tibet, Maitreya, copper alloy with traces of gilding, private collection, photo on Koller

In textual sources, when he sits at royal ease his right leg is pendent. The above does the teaching gesture with his right hand and holds the stem of a lotus that supports a ritual vase (kalash), an unusual attribute for him.

15th-16th c., Tibet, Maitreya, brass+cop. inlay, lotus with kundika, MC Daffos, aaoarts.com

15th-16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, brass with copper inlay, private collection, photo by Marie-Catherine Daffos for aaoarts

A rare portrait of Maitreya seated in a relaxed manner with a meditation belt holding his right leg into position. There is a minute kundika in the lotus to his left. The (broken) flower to his right may have held an ashoka tree branch. We will note the hair style and the absence of jewellery.

14th century, Tibet, Maitreya, bronze with paint, at the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg (Russia).

A Nepalese-style Maitreya seated with his legs locked (vajra position), his left hand doing the teaching gesture, his right hand expressing supreme generosity and displaying a small ritual water pot.

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt metal with pigments, private collection, attributed to the Sonam Gyaltsen atelier, photo on  HAR

In his buddha appearance, unusually flanked by lotuses that support the ritual water pot to his left and a stupa, his specific attribute, to his right.

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper alloy with turquoise, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

Standing, his right hand displaying supreme generosity, the left hand doing the teaching gesture, his blue lotus supporting a kundika.

11th-12th century, Tibet, Maitreya (labelled ‘Padmapani’), bronze with cold gold and pigments, private collection, photo on Cambiaste

The stupa at the top of the flaming arch and the water pot on the lotus to his right identify this figure as Maitreya, who doesn’t normally do the gesture to bestow refuge with his right hand (tip of ring finger pressing tip of thumb). The lotus to his left may have supported a wheel.

Tibet, Maitreya – various postures

14th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper with gems, private collection, photo by Hanhai auction.

Tibetan sculptures of Maitreya in his bodhisattva appearance, standing, are relatively few. The above wears princely jewellery studded with turquoise and lapis lazuli and holds the stem of a lotus that supports one of his attributes: a ritual water pot.

16th-17th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze with turquoise and paint, at the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg (Russia).

He is the only bodhisattva who may sit with both legs pendent like the historical buddha, his feet resting on a lotus flower fastened to the base. This one holds the stem of blue lotuses that support a water pot (to his left) and a stupa (to his right).

17th c., Tibet or Mongolia, Maitreya, gilt c.a., 20,4 cm, Paris Sotheby's

17th century, labelled ‘Tibet or Mongolia’, Maitreya, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

Like Avalokiteshvara, Maitreya sometimes sits at royal ease and may have an antelope skin over his left shoulder (and a water pot in his left hand in Gandharan art), but in this case the stupa on his head clearly identifies him. He is seated on a Nepalese-style lotus base, itself derived from a Nalanda design. The small oval chin and the single hair ornament are also reminiscent of early Nepalese art.

14th century, Tibet, Maitreya (labelled bodhisattva), bronze with paint, at the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg (Russia).

The traditional vajra position is, of course, commonly used to portray Maitreya. On this example, he does the fear-allaying gesture with the right hand while holding the stem of a blue lotus topped with a ritual water pot in the other.

We will note the absence of a crown and jewellery, which is odd. The former may have been lost but there are no physical signs of him ever having had armbands or a necklace, as would be expected. He wears a thin sash with a chased floral motif and a long lower garment incised with a geometrical pattern, his hair is braided and gathered in a tall chignon topped with a floral finial.

15th-16th c., Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze, 21,2 cm, kundika on left lotus, inscrip. 'homage to Jetsun Gonpo', Paris Sotheby's

15th-16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

Around the 15th century, Chinese-style works often depict him with two large open lotus flowers at shoulder level forming a kind of cross with the attributes they support.

Tibet, seated Maitreya (17)

Circa 14th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt copper with stone inlay, private collection, photo by Suneet Kapoor.

Maitreya in his bodhisattva appearance, seated with his legs locked, identified by his hand gesture (‘turning the wheel of dharma‘) and his hair piled in a chignon topped with a half-vajra finial, the crown and lotuses fastened to his arms missing.

15th c., Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze, 15 cm, lab. Manjushri, London sothebys

15th century, Tibet, Maitreya (labelled Manjushri), gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

The lotuses on each side of him may support a variety of attributes amongst which a ritual water pot, often placed to his left. In this case, the water pot is placed to his right and there is a leaf, possibly from an ashoka tree, placed vertically on the other open lotus, to his left.

16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze with turquoise and coral inlay, private collection, photo by Hollywood Galleries.

Here the flowers are a day and a night lotus, topped with a wheel  and a ritual water pot.

16th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with paint, at the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg (Russia).

On later sculptures there is sometimes  a branch of ashoka tree placed on the lotus to his right.

18th century, Tibet, Maitreya, gilt bronze, private collection, photo by Galerie Zacke.