14th century, Nepal, Vajrabhairava (labelled ‘Yamantaka Sukhavana Samvara’), copper alloy, photo from the Huntington Archive (nº 50534), at the National Museum in Kathmandu (Nepal).
Vajrabhairava, with 9 heads (including a buffalo head as his main head), 34 hands and 16 legs, in embrace with his consort, Vajravetali, who holds a skull cup and a flaying knife. He holds peaceful and wrathful attributes. His eight right legs are bent and usually tread on four gods and four mammals, his eight left legs are stretched and usually tread on another four gods and four birds (all missing here).
Licchavi period, Nepal, Mahakala, photo 20054 from the Huntington Archive, stone, at Patan City in Nepal.
Licchavi period, Nepal, Mahakala, stone, photo on Alamy , at the Golden Temple in Patan (Nepal).
Two early sculptures of Mahakala with one head and two arms, holding a flaying knife and a skull cup before his heart, a ritual staff propped against his left shoulder. He is adorned with snakes, a garland of severed heads, a belt with jewelled pendants.
Circa 17th century, Nepal, mahakala, black stone, private collection, photo by Sotheby’s, Indian and Southeast Asian Art, 1st April 2005 lot 77.Like the first example, this later work depicts him standing on a human victim, with both legs straight, possibly a variant of the panjaranata form, who squats on his victim and has a danda staff across his arms or against his left shoulder.
16th century, Nepal, labelled ‘Guhyasamaja’, gilt bronze (copper alloy with cold gold and pigment), private collection, photo by Sotheby’s, 2009.
This figure with a wrathful yaksha appearance has three heads and six hands, in which he holds a sword and an axe, a vajra stick and a vajra bell, a vajra sceptre and a vajra-tipped lasso – a combination we have not seen on any form of Guhyasamaja or any wrathful deity so far. He wears a tiger skin loin cloth, a necklace with pendants, snake jewellery and sacred cord, his flaming hair is tied with a snake, there is an effigy of a buddha at the front.
16th century, Nepal, Rakta Yamari with consort, gilt copper, photo on Fondation Alain Bordier , at the Tibet Museum in Gruyères (Switzerland).
Heruka rakta Yamari has a human head with three eyes, flaming hair, two arms and two legs crushing a corpse atop a prostrate male buffalo. He hold a skull cup in his left hand and brandishes a stick with a human head at the tip, she holds a flaying knife and a skull cup. He wears a tiger skin loin cloth and a celestial scarf and is adorned with bone jewellery, a five-skull crown, snakes and a garland of severed heads. She wears a bone apron and is adorned with a five-skull crown, snakes, a garland of skulls.
18th century, Nepal, Vajrapani, stone, private collection, photo on Hardt .
Canda/Chana Vajrapani wields a vajra sceptre in his right hand and holds a lasso in the other, pointing sideways. Instead of standing on a victim lying on a bed of serpents as usual, he has one foot on a large lotus.