Tibet, Vajradhara alone – (13)

Circa 16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with stones, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

This buddha has a three-tier chignon topped with a half-vajra finial. He wears a silk shawl with a lotus motif and an embroidered hem, even the back of his necklace and belt are inlaid with turquoise. The rim of the lotus base is decorated with a chased floral patter except at the back, where an inscription in Tibetan can be seen.

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

The personal touch of the artist is expressed here through the loops of the celestial scarf shaped like sprouting lotuses.

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, brass with turquoise and paint, private collection, photo by Bonham’s.

On this Chinese-style sculpture with voluminous drapin, red paint has been used for the ribbon and side bows of the crown.

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, brass, private collection, photo by Navin Kumar.

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, copper alloy with silver and copper inlaid eyes, private collection, photo by Castor Hara.

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bronze, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bronze with stones, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

16th-17th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bronze (copper alloy with traces of gilding), private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.Note the long strands of individually shaped curls that come half way down the forearm of this dynamic figure.

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

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Tibet, Vajradhara – alone (12)

13th-14th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, copper alloy with cold gold, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

Thought to have been made by a Newari artist in Tibet, this rare Licchavi-style image shows Vajradhara with his eyes closed, adorned with large floral earrings and matching tripartite crown, a thin sash drawn tightly across his chest, holding a vajra sceptre and a bell.

14th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt copper with silver and gems, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

He always hashis hands crossed over his heart, palm inwards, although the attributes may be supported by lotuses next to him.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt copper alloy with turquoise, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

The vajra sceptre may be placed vertically or horizontally.

15th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bronze with turquoise, coral, lapiz lazuli, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

He often has a half-vajra finial on his head. The above has a richly incised dhoti worn in the Nepalese fashion, i.e. short enough  to show his shin adornments and his anklets.

15th century, Tibet, gilt copper alloy and stone inlay, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

This image was erroneously published in a post on Vajrasattva and has since been deleted from it. It is clearly Vajradhara.

15th-16th century, Central Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bronze (or plain brass?) with turquoise inlay, private collection, photo by Cambi Casa d’Aste.

During the 15th and 16th century, workshops in Central Tibet produced many brass sculptures with silver and copper or stone inlay and finely incised Chinese-style silk garments.

 

Tibet, Vajradhara alone (11)

14th-15th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bornze (copper alloy) and stones, private collection, photo by Kapoor Galleries.

A standard portrait of Vajradhara holding his attributes in his hands crossed over his heart, palm inwards, the vajra sceptre in his right hand, the bell with a vajra finial in the other.

16th-17th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, copper alloy with silver, copper and turquoise inlay, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

The above holds them at shoulder level. He has silver-inlaid eyes, copper-inlaid lips and a turquoise-inlaid urna.

16th-17th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt copper alloy with stone inlay, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

The position of the hands on this work is different although the wrists are crossed at heart level. The attributes are missing.

17th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, rhinoceros horn, at the Rumtek monastery in Skkim, photo by Nik Douglas.When seated, his legs are locked in the vajra position.

18th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bronze (copper alloy) with paint and stones, at the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg (Russia).

Tibet, Vajradhara – alone (10)

14th-15th century, Tibet or Nepal, Vajradhara, gilt copper alloy, gilt copper, stone inlay, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s.

Vajradhara, his hands doing the ‘turning the wheel of dharma’ gesture, is identified by the attributes (vajra sceptre and bell) on the lotuses fastened to his elbows.

14th-15th century, Western Tibet, copper alloy, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

More often he holds the attributes in his hands crossed over his heart.

The above wears a long lower garment delicately engraved with a floral motif and a shawl over his shoulders.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt copper alloy with stone inlay, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

Here, the ornate silk garment is held in place with a belt with raining jewel pendants that rest over his legs.

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, bronze, private collection, photo by Marchance auctioneers.

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt copper alloy, private collection, photo by Galerie Hioco.

Tibet, Vajradhara with lotuses (3)

13th-14th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt copper, blue pigment and glass inlay, at the Liverpool Museum (UK).

Vajradhara (an emanation of the supreme buddha,Samantabhadra)  has his hands crossed over his heart and holds the stem of lotuses topped with his attributes, a vajra sceptre and vajra-handled bell (ghanta).

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

The vajra sceptre can be placed horizontally or vertically, as above.

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

Vajradhara, who represents the quintessence of buddhahood, always has a bodhisattva appearance.

16th century, Tibet, Vajrasattva, (Vajradhara), silver alloy, private collection, photo by Bonhams.

He is often confused with Vajrasattva (his equivalent according to some schools, his delegate according to others)  but the latter never has his hands crossed over his chest.

 

 

Tibet, Vajradhara alone (9)

14th-15th century (previously dated 14th century by a different gallery), Tibet, Vajrasattva (Vajradhara), gilt copper alloy with stone and coral inlay, photo by Mandarin Auction Co Ltd.

This superb work depicts Vajradhara without his consort, his hands crossed over his heart and holding his attributes, vajra and ghanta, his chignon topped with a vajra finial.

He is adorned with delicate jewellery inlaid with tiny pieces of turquoise and coral (a sign that the sculpture was made for a Tibetan patron), including ear adornments typical of the Nepalese Malla period. Another detail pointing to a Newar artist are the rings on his fingers.

His lower garment is richly incised with a floral motif and medallions.

15th century, Western Tibet, Guge style, Vajradhara, copper alloy, at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York (USA).

This honey-coloured (high copper content) sculpture combines elements characteristic of the former Tibetan Guge  kingdom (facial features and crown, cruciform navel) with others typical of a large group of sculptures made according to Chinese fashion (shawl over the shoulders, lower garment gathered loosely and covering most of the lotus base) and a distinct Tibetan preference for non gilt metal.

15th-16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara, gilt bronze (copper alloy), at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston (USA).

 

Tibet, Vajradhara with consort (2)

15th century, Nepal or Tibet, Vajradhara and Prajnaparamita, gilt copper alloy and stones, private collection, photo by Christie's.

15th century, Tibet or Nepal, Vajradhara and Prajnaparamita, gilt copper alloy and stones, private collection, photo by Christie’s.

Made by a Nepalese artist, in Tibet or Nepal, this masterpiece depicts Vajradhara in embrace with his consort, Prajnaparamita. He holds the vajra sceptre and the bell across her back.

14th-15th-c-tibet-or-nepal-vajradharaprajnaparamita-gilt-c-a-stones-228-cm-above-christies

He wears a sort of helmet topped with a half vajra.

15th century, Tibet, Vajradhara+consort, private collection, published on Himalaya Art Resources.

15th century, Tibet, Vajradhara+consort, private collection, published on Himalaya Art Resources.

Prajnaparamita wears the same accessories as him, plus a kind of beaded belt with long pendants, the above decorated with stone cabochons.

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She holds the same attributes.

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara and consort, copper alloy with copper inlay, at the Museum der Kulturen in Basel (Switzerland).

16th century, Tibet, Vajradhara and consort, copper alloy with copper inlay, at the Museum der Kulturen in Basel (Switzerland).