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  • Thumbnail for Blue Jambhala
    Blue Jambhala

    Blue Jambhala in his wrathful aspect, associated with the Aksobhya Buddhas, with mongoose in left hand, skull bowl in right, crowned by Aksobhya, standing on Kubera, who vomits jewels. A pot full of jewels sits in the deity's lotus throne. Jambhala, who appears in several colors and iconographic forms, is a deity for wealth, prosperity, and success. (De Mallman notes that Jambhala is sometimes included in the Ratnasambhava class)

  • Thumbnail for Padmasambhava (Thangka)
    Padmasambhava (Thangka) by Unknown

    This is a colored pencil drawing representing a thangka form, 23-1/2 (L) x 18 (W) inches. The Indian guru Padmasambhava is shown in the top center. Below to his left is his patron, the 8th century Tibetan king Trisong Detsen who invited him to spread Buddhist Dharma in Tibet. To his lower right is the Khembo (abbot) Shay-Wa-Tsen, who mediated between Padmasambhava and the king. A pair of crossed thunderbolts (vajras) ae located in the center of the composition. The snowy Himalayas and a clear blue sky are shown behind them. This image is also very skillfully rendered by an artist with prior training in the making of thangka paintings.

  • Thumbnail for Manjushri
    Manjushri by Unknown

    Ground pigment on cloth, mounted on brocade.

  • Thumbnail for Bronze Dalai Lama
    Bronze Dalai Lama

    This small bronze is identified in the records as the Dalai Lama. It is indeed a Lama, however it is not clear that it is one of the Dalai Lamas. The image is gilded, sitting a lalit asana (a posture of “royal easeâ€). His short-crop of hair is painted brown/black. He holds a manuscript with both hands. He sits on a simple box-like throne. The base conceals ritual deposits beneath a hammered copper cap with a painted crossed vajra design.

  • Thumbnail for Mahakala Thanka
    Mahakala Thanka

    Gold line on red background.Made for ritual purposes. An almost identical thanka is identified as Begtse Mahakala, Central Tibet, 18th century, in Desire and Devotion (P. Pal, 2001). It is best examined with a magnifying glass, as its true glory is seen in the fine details and the exquisite subtlety of the modeling of the main figure.

  • Thumbnail for Shakyamuni Buddha and Attendants - Thangka
    Shakyamuni Buddha and Attendants - Thangka by Unknown

    38 (L) x 23-1/2 (W) inches. Ink and color on cloth. Shakyamuni, the Historical Buddha is seated in the center on a lotus throne. His blue and gold radiant halo is framed by billowing clouds and flanked by a landscape. He holds a bowl of peaches in his left hand with his right i the earth witness mudra and wears a red and yellow robe. Above him, left to right, are Lozang Kalzang (7th Dalai Lama), Bajradhara, Amitayus; Buddha Akshoba, three-faced Savavid and Rajapani. He is flanked by two Mahassiddas on asses above two sacred elephants. In front of the throne are two disciples and below is Jambhala, Mahasuvarna Vaishravana and Black Jambhala (the Three gods of wealth). On the reverse are eleven red ink mantric inscriptions: Om ah hum. Mounted as a scroll with red and yellow silk frames on dark blue silk with a faded red silk dust cover and plain silver scroll ends.

  • Thumbnail for Offering Pitcher with Feathers
    Offering Pitcher with Feathers by Unknown

    Pitcher: 4-3/8 (H) x 1-7/8 (dia); feather top: 14-1/2 (L) x 3-1/4 (W) inches. Brass vase-shaped Bumpa or offering pitcher with a flat lozenge design pierced overhanging rim and a high matched pierced foot with a long tapering spout. A long copper stopper fitted with peacock feathers and a grass filler sits into the top of the pitcher and functions as a sprinkler for the consecrated water.

  • Thumbnail for Round Ga’u
    Round Ga’u by Unknown

    4-1/8 (L) x 3 (W) inches. Round silver G'au or reliquary box with beaded rim and scrolling leaf filigree design on the lid with a single coral bead in the middle. The back has a removable base plate made of copper. The cover fitted on one side with a long looped ring and a pointed bead on the other.

  • Thumbnail for Letter Seal
    Letter Seal by Unknown

    2 (L) x 1/2 (Dia.) inches. Conical iron seal with a rattle inside and a lotus flower finial with a hole in it for a cord. Reticulated and engraved floral design, the vase with calligraphic design.

  • Thumbnail for Siling Poba (Man's Drinking Bowl)
    Siling Poba (Man's Drinking Bowl) by Unknown

    2-1/8 (H) x 4-3/4 (Dia.) inches. Silver -lined wood burl man's drinking cup, with silver repousse floral capped foot with Eight Chinese Taoist Immortal symbols.

  • Thumbnail for PORTRAIT OF NGAWANG LOBSANG GYATSO, THE FIFTH DALAI LAMA (1617-1682)
    PORTRAIT OF NGAWANG LOBSANG GYATSO, THE FIFTH DALAI LAMA (1617-1682)

    Information provided by the museum label states, "In Tibet, the religious teacher (lama or guru) has a special significance. The great Fifth Dalai Lama, sitting in a classic pose of meditation, is honored in this three-dimensional portrait. He is an important figure in Tibetan history because of the key role he played in consolidating spiritual and political rule in the country during the 17th century. He is famous for building the Potala Palace, which towers over the capital city of Lhasa, and for establishing close diplomatic relations with the Manchu court of China. During his lifetime, he was publicly recognized as an incarnation of Avalokiteshvara, the Bodhisattva of Compassion.†-- Gilt bronze -- Coll. Art Institute of Chicago (Kate S. Buckingham Endowment, 1996.31)

  • Thumbnail for Khedrupje’s Vision of Tsongkhapa on a Tiger - Thangka detail
    Khedrupje’s Vision of Tsongkhapa on a Tiger - Thangka detail by Unknown

    Ground mineral pigment on cotton, silk brocade backing, 49-1/2 (L) x 29 (W) inches. Je Tsongkhapa, c. 1357-1419 is revered as a manifestation of Manjushri, the god of wisdom, founder of the Galugpa or Yellow Hat sect, and a proponent of the Kadampa school of Buddhism. The tiger is sometimes shown as his vahana (vehicle), indicatin gTsongkhapa's ability to control the tiger-like bodily senses. He holds a skull in his left hand and a flaming sword in his right. At the top left is the Third Panchen Lama (Yontenod Palden Yoshe) and at the right is the philosopher-sage Nagarjuna. Along the bottom, left to right, are Jedung Lozang Palden, Mahakala and Asanga.

  • Thumbnail for Samsara (Wheel of rebirth) (Thangka)
    Samsara (Wheel of rebirth) (Thangka) by Unknown

    Ground mineral pigment on cotton, silk, 64 (L) x 39 (W) inches. This is a common Tibetan theme that represents a dynamic vision of karma and the cycles of rebirth in various forms, both coarse and subtle, earthly, heavenly and hellish. All are driven by the beastly desires symbolized by the snake, bird and pig located at the center of the wheel. The twelve causes of rebirth are shown on the rim while the six conditions of birth are shown inside the wheel. The wheel is held in the grasp of Yama, the lord of death. The message here is that the teachings of the Buddha offer a path to escape from this world of endless change and suffering.

  • Thumbnail for Samsara (Wheel of rebirth) (Thangka)
    Samsara (Wheel of rebirth) (Thangka) by Unknown

    Ground mineral pigment on cotton, silk, 64 (L) x 39 (W) inches. This is a common Tibetan theme that represents a dynamic vision of karma and the cycles of rebirth in various forms, both coarse and subtle, earthly, heavenly and hellish. All are driven by the beastly desires symbolized by the snake, bird and pig located at the center of the wheel. The twelve causes of rebirth are shown on the rim while the six conditions of birth are shown inside the wheel. The wheel is held in the grasp of Yama, the lord of death. The message here is that the teachings of the Buddha offer a path to escape from this world of endless change and suffering.

  • Thumbnail for Ideal Tibetan Government (Lotus Field) - third rendition
    Ideal Tibetan Government (Lotus Field) - third rendition by Unknown

    Ink and pencil drawing of an arrangement of lotuses signifying the structure of ideal Tibetan government, 23-5/8 (L) x 18 (W) inches. This is the same theme as 2004.2.3 and 2004.2.4, but here the various functions are symbolized by a hierarchy of lotuses rather than buildings. The Dalai Lama is again located at the top center, connected by lines to the heavens above. This is rendered with some skill by an artist with prior training.

  • Thumbnail for Padmarupa (Thangka)
    Padmarupa (Thangka) by Unknown

    Ground mineral pigment on cotton, silk, 50-1/2 (L) x 30-1/2 (W). Padmarupa wears a five -skull crown and holds a conch in his left hand and a drum in his right. Above him are Paden chogyo, Chok Lang, Marme Dzay, Chokyi Drakpa and Yonten O. In front are Yawa Huti, and ascetic and the scholar Gaya Bhara. In the lower foreground are Mahakala, a monk and Lhamo. Painted in Central Tibetan style.

  • Thumbnail for Eight Manifestations of Guru Rinpoche - reverse side
    Eight Manifestations of Guru Rinpoche - reverse side by Unknown

    Ground pigment on cloth, mounted on brocade.

  • Thumbnail for Wheel of Life - reverse side
    Wheel of Life - reverse side by Unknown

    Ground pigment on cloth, mounted on brocade.

  • Thumbnail for Buddha Sakyamuni
    Buddha Sakyamuni by Unknown

    Stone ground mineral pigments on cotton, mounted on brocade.

  • Thumbnail for Water Pot to Feed the Hungry Ghosts
    Water Pot to Feed the Hungry Ghosts by Unknown

    Basin (b): 9-5/8 (Dia.) x 2-3/4 (H); stand(a): 9-3/4 (H) x 7-3/8 (Dia.); pot (c): 4-1/8 (H) x 6-7/8 (Dia.) plus spout; dish (d): 5 (Dia.) x 3/4 (H) in inches. Silver- a) Water Pot - Round covered silver pot with applied spout and side ring handle, engraved with scrolling peony design and applied Buddhist emblems. The flat, stepped lid has a scene in the enter of a seated monk holding rosary beads and performing the "Feeding the Hungry Ghost" ceremony. It is framed by a circle of Taoist Immortal symbols with leaf scrolls on the sloping sides and applied Buddhist symbols. On the base are four unidentified stamped marks around a center indented hole. b) Dish - Flat silver dish with double silver thread around the flaring rim. In the center is set a small turquoise bead. c) Stand - Folding hinged silver stand in the form of the Chinese character SHOU, long life. d) Basin - Silver Bowl engraved with floral designs around the exterior and eight applied Buddhist symbols attached with rivets to the inside and one ring handle on the side.The bottom engraved with The Four Friends: an elephant with a monkey, hare and partridge on his back. It has the same stamped marks ont the bottom as the water pot.

  • Thumbnail for Amitayus Thangka
    Amitayus Thangka by Unknown

    46 (L) x 26-1/2 (W) inches. Painting on cloth in U-Tri central Tibetan style. Amitayus, the Buddha of Eternal Life, is seated in the center on a lotus throne between a peony and a peach tree. Adorned with jewelry, he wears a gold crown on his head and blue scarves draped over his shoulders. He holds the Vase of Eternal Life in his hands. Above him, left to right, are Avalokiteshvara, Tsongkhapa, and a Akshobhya Buddha Yab Yum. Below are the White Tara i the left corner and Usnishavijaya in the right. On the reverse are eight red in mantric inscriptions: Om ah hum. Mounted as a scroll with red and yellow floral silk brocade frames on blue floral silk brocade with a painted yellow and green and red silk dust covers and ornate repousse silk lotus design scroll ends.

  • Thumbnail for Phurpa
    Phurpa by Unknown

    8-1/8 (L) x 7/8 (W) inches. This cast brass phurpa has three faces of wrathful deity at the end followed by a hexagonal knot, a double lotus flower grip, another knot, and head of a makara holding the tripartite iron blade with gilded nagas emerging from the mouth of the makara.

  • Thumbnail for Padmasambhava Guru Rimpoche
    Padmasambhava Guru Rimpoche by Unknown

    4 inches (H) x 1-1/4 (D) x 2-1/2 (W)Figure, bronze with traces of pigment, seated Buddha, sealed base.

  • Thumbnail for Padmasambhava (Guru Rimpoche) (Thangka) - detail
    Padmasambhava (Guru Rimpoche) (Thangka) - detail by Unknown

    Ground mineral pigment on cotton, silk, 47-3/4 (L) x 29 (W) inches. Padmasambhava was the Indian Guru who brought Vajrayana Buddhism to Tibet in the 8th century, where he is credited with founding the Nyingmapa sect. He is shown surrounded by mahasiddhas (great yogic adepts) and manifestations of his various forms. Above, from right, are Vajrahana and consort, Vajrapani, Amitabha, two mahasiddhas, an unidentified figure, Mahakala and consort, Chenrezi, a Dakini, Lodan chrogsre, Nyama Oxer, and Shakyasengge. Flanking him ae his tow consorts, Mandarawa and Yeshetsogyal. Below are a protective deity, Guru Sengge, lion headed Dakini, Dorje Drolo, Rahu, Begtse, a guardian figure, Dorje Legspa on a snow lion, and a group of heavenly musicians on another snow lion in the lower right.

  • Thumbnail for Padmasambhava (Guru Rimpoche) (Thangka)
    Padmasambhava (Guru Rimpoche) (Thangka) by Unknown

    Ground mineral pigment on cotton, silk, 47-3/4 (L) x 29 (W) inches. Padmasambhava was the Indian Guru who brought Vajrayana Buddhism to Tibet in the 8th century, where he is credited with founding the Nyingmapa sect. He is shown surrounded by mahasiddhas (great yogic adepts) and manifestations of his various forms. Above, from right, are Vajrahana and consort, Vajrapani, Amitabha, two mahasiddhas, an unidentified figure, Mahakala and consort, Chenrezi, a Dakini, Lodan chrogsre, Nyama Oxer, and Shakyasengge. Flanking him ae his tow consorts, Mandarawa and Yeshetsogyal. Below are a protective deity, Guru Sengge, lion headed Dakini, Dorje Drolo, Rahu, Begtse, a guardian figure, Dorje Legspa on a snow lion, and a group of heavenly musicians on another snow lion in the lower right.