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Arnold Lieberman

Thangka of Tsongkapa
Bhutan
19th c.
Natural pigments and gold paint on prepared fabric, matted
22 x 17.5 inches

An exquisite Bhutanese thangka, probably depicting Tsongkapa (1357-1419), founder of the Gelugpa School and Ganden Monastery in Tibet. He sits on a lion throne with entwined dragons circling his nimbus, with other Gelugpa lineage teachers to his upper left and right. Amitayus, White Tara, and various other deities surround the throne. His right hand holds the stem of a lotus which supports the Sword of Manjusri, in his left hand a Vase of Long Life anchors a lotus on which a book of the teachings rests. Various peaceful offerings are displayed in front of his throne, devis holding auspicious symbols float in clouds, and forest animals frolic in the mountainous landscape visible in the background. The painting is in beautiful condition, with its surface intact and gold line work undisturbed.

all text, images Arnold Lieberman

 

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