Tibetan Gilt Bronze Figure of Shantideva, 16th-17th Century, Tibet For Sale
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Tibetan Gilt Bronze Figure of Shantideva, 16th-17th Century, Tibet

About

A fine and well cast 16th-17th century Tibetan gilt copper alloy statue of Shantideva, the great 8th century Indian teacher and scholar.  The gilt bronze figure expertly cast, with wonderful detail and rich gilding. The face cold painted gold with polychrome details. Shantideva sits upon a double lotus pedestal, a Vajra before him, an overflowing kapala skull cup in his cupped hands. The petals of the lotus throne well defined and robustly cast under a fine beaded border.  Shantideva is dressed in monastic robes draped over a sleeveless vest. The hem of his robes with a beautiful scrolling pattern. The pointed pandita hat with long earflaps rests upon his head. He holds his hands in dhyana mudra, the gesture of contemplation and meditation, though his slightly cocked head, with its youthful features, smiling eyes and wide grin, indicate a certain mischievousness. His legs set in a relaxed pose, the toes of the exposed foot seemingly curling in ecstasy. Shantideva was a renowned Buddhist scholar and teacher, and is credited with writing the Bodhicaryavatara, "The Bodhisattva's Way of Life". By all accounts, Shantideva was a horrible student, slacking off and never paying attention to his teachers at Nalanda Monastery, one of the greatest centers of learning at the time. The head abbot, frustrated with Shantideva's apparent disinterest in his studies, asked him to give a lecture to the entire monastery, expecting him to fail miserably and leave the monastery. Instead, Shantideva delivered, from memory, 22 the Bodhicaryavatara, a detailed and nuanced guide to enlightenment that is still studied today.  The base sealed with a copper plate inscribed with a double Vajra.

Details

  • Of the Period
  • Place of Origin
  • Date of Manufacture
    16th Century
  • Condition Details
    In very good condition for age. Somewhat dirty from ritual use. Some of the gilding worn, with various scratches throughout. Please see photos.
  • Wear
    Wear consistent with age and use. Minor fading.
  • Dimensions
    H 6.5 in. x W 4.75 in. x D 3.75 in.H 16.51 cm x W 12.07 cm x D 9.53 cm
  • Seller Location
    Austin, TX
  • Reference Number
    LU894714448221
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About the Seller

5 / 5

Founded in 2001, this dealer offers a carefully curated selection of furniture, jewelry, sculpture and works of art spanning millennia, continents and cultures. Although it seeks out beauty in all its forms, this dealer specializes in Asian antiquities, especially Chinese pieces from the Han and...

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1stdibs seller since 2010
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Located in Austin, TX
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