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A large and impressive Tibetan fire-gilt bronze figure of eleven-headed Avalokiteshvara. 18th century

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A large and impressive Tibetan fire-gilt bronze figure of eleven-headed Avalokiteshvara. 18th century

Standing upright on a lotus base, the Bodhisattva of Universal Compassion appears in his eleven-headed, eight-armed form. His primary hands in anjalimudra, the other six radiating to the sides. In the upper right hand a pearl that was previously part of a rosary. He wears a long dhoti as well as numerous body and head jewellery, a floating shawl and an antelope skin over his shoulder. Wooden baseplate. Partially polychrome. Attributes missing.
Height 68 cm

Originating in India, Avalokiteshvara (Tib. Chenrezig) became one of the most venerated deities in Tibetan Buddhism as early as the 7th century. According to the Mani Kambum, an important religious text from the 12th/13th century, the Buddha Shakyamuni prophesied that the Bodhisattva would become the master of the "barbarian snow land" and would thereupon lead its people to enlightenment. Avalokiteshvara is thus believed to be the patron saint of Tibet, and for over a thousand years, his mantra "om-mani-padme-hum" has been fundamental for Buddhist followers.

Among the numerous emanations and forms of Avalokiteshvara, multi-headed and multi-armed figures derived from Hinduism, such as Ekadashamukha and Amoghapasha, are particularly revered in esoteric Vajrayana Buddhism. This figure belongs to this lineage of works and is of a particular type that has been produced and perfected over several centuries.

The strong, pillar-like appearance is completed with rows of crowned heads, topped by the head of Amitabha - to whom Avalokiteshvara owes the eleven faces. With many heads and arms, he looks in all directions and acts in all worlds. Where his eyes cannot reach, the eye on the hand in varadamudra recognizes the suffering instead. Where a peaceful approach cannot overpower demons, the wrathful Mahakala takes on, whose head appears beneath that of Amitabha. Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara truly proves to be the manifestation of Universal Compassion. Like the black antelope whose skin hangs over his shoulder, the bodhisattva, out of his deepest compassion, is ready to sacrifice everything he can to help all beings of the world and bring them onto the path to salvation.

西藏 十八世紀 精美銅鎏金十一麵八臂觀音蓮座立像
來源:德國黑森州私人收藏, 據藏家所敘述1975年購於蘇黎世Koller

觀世音菩薩(藏語:Chenrezig)源於印度,早在公元七世紀就成為藏傳佛教中最受尊崇的神明之一。據 十二/十三世紀的重要宗教文獻《嘛呢全集》記載,佛祖釋迦牟尼曾預言觀世音菩薩將征服西藏的 "未開化之人",並帶領其走向覺悟。因此,觀世音菩薩是西藏的守護神,一千多年來,他的咒語 "唵嘛呢叭咪吽"一直是佛教中最重要的咒語。
在觀世音菩薩的眾多化身和形態中,源自印度教的多頭多臂觀世音菩薩如十一面八臂觀世音菩薩以及十二臂不空羂索觀音在密宗金剛乘佛教中尤其受歡迎。此件拍品就屬其中,完美呈現在幾世紀佛造像制作中不斷精益求精所創造出的形態。

Provenance

Private collection, Hessen, according to consigner acquired at Koller, Zurich, 1975

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Time, Location
18 Jun 2024
Germany, Cologne
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[ translate ]

A large and impressive Tibetan fire-gilt bronze figure of eleven-headed Avalokiteshvara. 18th century

Standing upright on a lotus base, the Bodhisattva of Universal Compassion appears in his eleven-headed, eight-armed form. His primary hands in anjalimudra, the other six radiating to the sides. In the upper right hand a pearl that was previously part of a rosary. He wears a long dhoti as well as numerous body and head jewellery, a floating shawl and an antelope skin over his shoulder. Wooden baseplate. Partially polychrome. Attributes missing.
Height 68 cm

Originating in India, Avalokiteshvara (Tib. Chenrezig) became one of the most venerated deities in Tibetan Buddhism as early as the 7th century. According to the Mani Kambum, an important religious text from the 12th/13th century, the Buddha Shakyamuni prophesied that the Bodhisattva would become the master of the "barbarian snow land" and would thereupon lead its people to enlightenment. Avalokiteshvara is thus believed to be the patron saint of Tibet, and for over a thousand years, his mantra "om-mani-padme-hum" has been fundamental for Buddhist followers.

Among the numerous emanations and forms of Avalokiteshvara, multi-headed and multi-armed figures derived from Hinduism, such as Ekadashamukha and Amoghapasha, are particularly revered in esoteric Vajrayana Buddhism. This figure belongs to this lineage of works and is of a particular type that has been produced and perfected over several centuries.

The strong, pillar-like appearance is completed with rows of crowned heads, topped by the head of Amitabha - to whom Avalokiteshvara owes the eleven faces. With many heads and arms, he looks in all directions and acts in all worlds. Where his eyes cannot reach, the eye on the hand in varadamudra recognizes the suffering instead. Where a peaceful approach cannot overpower demons, the wrathful Mahakala takes on, whose head appears beneath that of Amitabha. Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara truly proves to be the manifestation of Universal Compassion. Like the black antelope whose skin hangs over his shoulder, the bodhisattva, out of his deepest compassion, is ready to sacrifice everything he can to help all beings of the world and bring them onto the path to salvation.

西藏 十八世紀 精美銅鎏金十一麵八臂觀音蓮座立像
來源:德國黑森州私人收藏, 據藏家所敘述1975年購於蘇黎世Koller

觀世音菩薩(藏語:Chenrezig)源於印度,早在公元七世紀就成為藏傳佛教中最受尊崇的神明之一。據 十二/十三世紀的重要宗教文獻《嘛呢全集》記載,佛祖釋迦牟尼曾預言觀世音菩薩將征服西藏的 "未開化之人",並帶領其走向覺悟。因此,觀世音菩薩是西藏的守護神,一千多年來,他的咒語 "唵嘛呢叭咪吽"一直是佛教中最重要的咒語。
在觀世音菩薩的眾多化身和形態中,源自印度教的多頭多臂觀世音菩薩如十一面八臂觀世音菩薩以及十二臂不空羂索觀音在密宗金剛乘佛教中尤其受歡迎。此件拍品就屬其中,完美呈現在幾世紀佛造像制作中不斷精益求精所創造出的形態。

Provenance

Private collection, Hessen, according to consigner acquired at Koller, Zurich, 1975

[ translate ]
Sale price
Unlock
Estimate
Unlock
Time, Location
18 Jun 2024
Germany, Cologne
Auction House
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