Tibet, Shakyamuni with rosettes

14th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy) and stone inlay, private collection, photo by Pundoles.

There is a group of Nepalese-style sculptures (made in Tibet by Newars) that depict the historical buddha with a broad forehead and a squarish lower jaw, adorned with a headband tied with long ribbons and decorated with rosettes placed above his ears.

14th-15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Koller.

Usually gilt, they have broad shoulders and big arms. The figure is normally seated and the robe is decorated with an incised hem.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with paint, at the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg (Russia).

Occasionally, the headband is more like a diadem, with a bigger rosette at the front.

17th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, brass, at the British Museum (London).

This is a later brass version, with different body shape and proportions.

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Tibet, Shakyamuni – unusual works (5)

14th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, bronze (brass), pigments, private collection, photo by Astamagala.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Cornette de Saint-Cyr.

Two small sculptures of the historical buddha (10,5 cm and 8,8 cm respectively) with no urna on the forehead.

14th-15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, copper alloy with copper inlay, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

This one has unique facial features including a large triangular urna, thick raised eyebrows, long earlobes decorated with beading on the edge.

Late 15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Nagel.

It is most unusual for the left nipple to show through the transparent sanghati of the historical buddha. We will note also the shape of the extremity of the garment placed over his left shoulder, unlike any other we have seen so far.

 

Tibet, Shakyamuni seated -dhyana mudra (2)

Circa 11th century, Western Tibet, Guge, Shakyamuni, clay and paint, private collection, photo by Astamangala.

This rare piece depicts the historical buddha with both hands in the meditation gesture (dhyana mudra), his long pleated robe covering both shoulders, the hem decorated with blue embroidery.

11th-12th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, brass, is or was at the gTsug Lakhang, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

On this Indian-style work the diaphanous garments are barely noticeable.

Circa 13th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, brass with silver and copper inlay, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

Tibetan brass sculpture at its height often incorporated silver inlay, in this case for the eyes and the beading on the hem…

… and copper inlay, for the lips and the incised border.

The metal inlay continues at the back of the robe, whereas the majority of Tibetan metal sculptures have no lotus petals at the back of the base.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

The dharma wheels incised on the sole of his feet distinguish him from Amitabha, who has a buddha appearance and holds a bowl in his cupped hands.

 

 

Tibet, Shakyamuni with vajra sceptre (4)

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Nagel.

The iconography is the same as for Akshobhya in his buddha appearance: the left hand cupped in meditation, the right hand touching the ground (calling Earth to witness his enlightenment). A vajra sceptre is placed before him on the lotus base.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, copper alloy with silver inlay and pigments, private collection on Himalayan Art Resources.

The above wears a patched robe with silver-inlaid seams.

The back of the robe has been given the same finish and the row of petals continue at the back of the base.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with pigments, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

The size of the vajra sceptre varies a lot.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, brass with copper-inlaid hem,  private collection, photo by Christie’s.

Sometimes only the upper half of the attribute is showing.

Undated (circa 16th century), (Tibet), Shakyamuni, bronze and pigments, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

This buddha has painted facial features and blue pigment in his hair, the hem of his sanghati is decorated with a geometrical pattern.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Koller.

The vajra sceptre here is very small yet noticeable because the lower end of the buddha’s robe is not spread over the base.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Hayman Himalayan Art.

Occasionally a thin piece of the inner garment can be seen but it is unusual for it to be incised, in this case with a fine grain pattern which contrasts with the double row of thick beading on the outer robe. The vajra is placed quite close to his feet and almost merges with the fabric.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, copper alloy with copper inlay, private collection, photo by Koller.

Undated, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt silver, published in Sattvas and Rajas, the Culture and Art of Tibetan Buddhism, photo on Himalayan Art Resources.

On this silver sculpture the vajra is placed on the rim of the lotus base. The hem of his sanghati is decorated with a stippled and incised geometrical pattern between two rows of beading.

Undated, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt metal, private collection, published on Himalayan Art Resources.

Tibet, Shakyamuni – seated (19)

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy) private collection, photo by Christie’s.

Following the Tibetan fashion, this buddha’s thick snail-like curls are dyed with blue pigment and topped with a gold lotus bud finial. Note the particularly plump tows turned inwards. The border of his robe is incised with a wavy geometrical pattern.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Moss green.

This Nepalese-style figure has black hair and a large dark lotus finial. The hem of his transparent sanghati, incised with a large rice grain motif, curves round his uncovered breast and reveals the edge of his inner garment.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Koller.

This one wears a patched robe with a wide incised border worn almost in a straight line across the chest.

 

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with a turquoise urna, private collection, photo by Koller.

And here the sanghati is worn in a totally straight line. Its hem is decorated with an incised geometrical pattern between two rows of thick beading.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with copper inlay, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Koller.

Circa 16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt metal, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper with pigment, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

16th-17th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

Following the Chinese fashion, this sanghati is wrapped loosely and the soft folds of the cloth make the garment appear voluminous.

 

Tibet, Shakaymuni – seated (18)

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy with turquoise inlay, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Koller.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Koller.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Christie’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper with cold gold and pigments, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Koller.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Nagel.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, copper alloy with cold gold, at the Newark Museum (USA).

15th-16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Lempertz.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Mossgreen.

Circa 16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper and pigments, is or was at the Jokhang in Lhasa, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

16th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, copper alloy with cold gold, private collection, photo by Koller.

Tibet, Shakyamuni – seated (17)

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Koller.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Christie’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with turquoise inlay, private collection, photo by Koller.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, published on buddhist-art.info.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Koller.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Christie’s.

15th century, Tibet, Shakyamuni, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Christie’s.