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Between and Mortarboard

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Portrait of an unidentified Tibetan lama (teacher)

Accession Number

Portrait of an unidentified Tibetan lama (teacher)


Medium & Support

8 1/4 in. x 4 3/4 in. x 4 1/4 in. ( 21 cm x 12 cm x 10.8 cm )

Credit Line
Bequest of Thakur Rup Chand

Subject matter
A portrait sculpture of an unidentified Tibetan lama (teacher), who is shown holding the vajra and bell, the two principal ritual implements of Vajrayana Buddhism. He wears the tall cap of a pandit, a scholar.

Physical Description
A very finely hollow cast bronze portrait sculpture of a seated figure, with the lotus dais and pointed monk's cap cast in one piece with the figure.
The monk is shown seated in the padmasana (lotus) pose, with each foot resting sole-upward on the opposite knee. In his right hand, he holds a vajra (a double-pronged scepter) and simultaneously makes the vitarka gesture for teaching. His left hand, resting on his lap, holds a bell. His costume consists of a dhoti, which is knotted high on his torso; a short-sleeved shirt, crossed over his chest and decorated with incised scroll patterns, with a fret design at the border; and an overrobe that wraps around his left shoulder and is draped over his right shoulder. His face has a broad forehead, incised eyebrows in a high arch; downcast eyes, with leaf-shaped upper eyelids; a broad, flat nose; a sweet smile and full lips; and a narrow chin. His tall, pointed monk's cap, which completely hides his hair, has flaps that spread to reach his upper arms.

Primary Object Classification

Primary Object Type

Collection Area

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bells (idiophones)
lotus (motif)

1 Related Resource

(Part of 2 Learning Collections)

& Author Notes

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