Tibetan antiques at Himalayan Antiques
Manjushree Thangka Gold Contemporary

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All Items: Popular Collectibles: Cultural: Chinese: Contemporary: item # 551602

Please refer to our stock # 20537c when inquiring.

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Himalayan Antiques
By Appointment
Ipswich, Massachusetts 01938

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Manjushree Thangka Gold Contemporary
108 small identical images of Manjushree surround the larger central image of Manjushree seated on a lotus throne. Manjushri is considered to be the oldest of the Bodhisattvas. He is particularly revered in Nepal, where he is regarded as the creator of the Kathmandu Valley. Legend has it that the Valley was covered with water until he cut away a portion of a hill with his sword and let the water drain from the lake, thus creating the valley. His sword is now considered to be the implement for cutting through ignorance, and thus he is the Bodhisattva of wisdom and science.

This thangka is unmounted and suitable for framing. Including the border it measures 18" by 25". It could be paired with the thangka of 108 Buddhas (20537c). The two are identical in size and matched in style. These thangkas are part of a series of meticulously rendered thangkas painted largely in 24-caret gold paint with additional muted colors. The gold has been burnished until it shines, producing a striking effect when the thangka is view first hand.

As our name implies, Himalayan Antiques specializes in dealing in antiques from the region, but in the course of our annual buying trips we have become friendly with one of the leading dealers in Kathmandu of new thangka paintings. This family employs a number of the most skillful artists in the field, and we always purchase several new thangkas just to meet the needs of customers.

This year we looked over hundreds of thangkas to make our selection of just a few dozen. The range of qualities is extensive. The best thangka painters work almost exclusively on consignment and the are often booked years in advance. The least talented painters churn out large numbers of small and simple thangkas to be sold to tourists for a few dollars each. In between these extremes is a wide range of qualities and levels of artistry. Better artists are usually given larger canvases with more detailed and complex designs and are allowed more of the costly 24k gold to work with. It is testimony to the skill of the artist who painted these thangkas that he was allowed to use gold paint throughout.

Note: With great reluctance we entered this thangka in the "Chinese" subcategory of Popular Collectibles since there is no subcategory for either Tibetan or Himalayan items.

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