A COPPER AND SILVER INLAID COPPER ALLOY FIGURE OF ACALA TIBET, 13TH CENTURY

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Lot 101
A COPPER AND SILVER INLAID COPPER ALLOY FIGURE OF ACALA
TIBET, 13TH CENTURY

Sold for HK$ 312,500 (US$ 39,826) inc. premium
A COPPER AND SILVER INLAID COPPER ALLOY FIGURE OF ACALA
TIBET, 13TH CENTURY
Inlaid with copper eyes, silver fangs, and a silver right nipple; vivified with an 'om, ah, hum' inscription on his back and the Acala mantra on the base: 'om cand maha roshana hum phat'.
Himalayan Art Resources item no.2148
16 cm (6 1/4 in.) high

Footnotes

  • Known as the 'Immovable One' or 'King of the Wrathful Ones', Krodharaja Acala is one of four main deities of the Kadam order, counted among Akshobhya, Avalokiteshvara, and Tara. The Kadam, founded by Atisha (982-1054), popularized this standing form, which was succeeded by a kneeling form promulgated by the Sakya, come the 14th century.

    Acala is a meditational deity and a remover of obstacles for the practitioner and sacred environment. Ganesh assumes that role in Hinduism, but here, within the Vajrayana Buddhist context, the elephant-headed god is portrayed as the very 'King of Hindrances', now crushed under Acala's feet. Modeled lolling across the base with an engorged belly of sweets, it appears that the sculptor was well versed in how Ganesh appears in India as a consummate sensualist. Now subdued, with his left hand Ganesh motions the gesture of warding off evil (karana mudra) in support of his master.

    The Kadam order was overshadowed by the ascendance of the Kagyu, Sakya, and Gelug schools in the ebb and flow of Tibet's political history. However, Acala remained an important deity, taking on increasing roles as a protector and purifier of certain tantras, for which end he employs his sword and vajra-tipped lasso. For instance, his presence is required within the antechamber of a Newari esoteric shrine (Huntington & Bangdel, The Circle of Bliss, Columbus, 2003, p.328).

    This sculptural example heightens his wrathful qualities with copper-inlaid eyes, as if blood-shot. His body is satisfyingly corpulent, and his stance robust and convincingly 'immovable'. The surface has been rubbed to a smooth, glossy patina having been propitiated throughout the centuries. The sculpture embodies the vigor and spirit so praised of early Tibetan art.

    Compare it with a related example in scale and composition within the Qing Palace Collection, published in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum: Buddhist Statues of Tibet, Shanghai, 2003, p.125, no.119.

    Provenance
    Private European Collection, 1960s, by repute
    Thence by descent


    錯銀錯紅銅不動明王銅像
    西藏,十三世紀
    銅眼銀牙,右乳鑲銀;形像生動,背部刻有"唵阿吽"三字銘文,底座刻有不動明王心咒:"唵贊扎瑪哈柔強那吽呸"。
    喜馬拉雅藝術資源網2148號
    高 16 釐米 (6 1/4 英寸)

    150,000-200,000 港元

    不動明王亦稱為"不動使者"或"憤怒明王",與阿閦佛、觀世音菩薩和度母並列為噶當派四大重要本尊。噶當派由阿底峽(982-1054 年)創立;此尊造像的站立姿正是由該派普及,然而到十四世紀其逐漸被薩迦派所傳播的跪坐姿所取代。

    不動明王被奉為禪定尊,為修行者和聖域掃除一切障礙。像頭神相當於印度教中的"不動明王",但是在藏傳佛教中,像頭神常化身"障礙魔",被不動明王踩在腳下。此尊造像中的像頭神挺著圓滾滾的肚皮懶洋洋地躺在底座上,創作者以精湛的技藝傳神刻畫出像頭神在印度的極致感官享樂主義者形像。雖被制服,像頭神的左手仍施以驅魔之期剋印(karana mudra)以支持其上之主尊。

    即便噶當派隨著噶舉、薩迦和格魯派的崛起漸漸湮沒在西藏風起雲湧的政治更迭中,不動明王仍然是佛教的重要本尊,越來越多地以密教經典保護者和淨化者之形像出現,配上了寶劍和金剛杵繩索。每座尼瓦爾秘傳神殿的前廳都會出現不動明王的形像(參見 Huntington 與 Bangdel,The Circle of Bliss,哥倫布,2003 年,頁 328)。

    此尊造像以好似充血的錯紅銅眼睛凸顯出其憤怒之形像。其體型敦碩、姿態強健,傳達出其令人信服的"無可撼動"形像。數個世紀的光陰為此造像打磨出了平滑光澤的包漿。早期西藏藝術廣為頌揚之活力與精神體現無遺。

    與其尺寸與造型相似的作品可見於清代宮廷收藏,參見故宮博物館藏文物珍品全集:藏傳佛教造像,上海,2003 年,頁 125,119 號。

    來源
    歐洲私人收藏,1960年代,傳
    此後家族傳承
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A COPPER AND SILVER INLAID COPPER ALLOY FIGURE OF ACALA TIBET, 13TH CENTURY
A COPPER AND SILVER INLAID COPPER ALLOY FIGURE OF ACALA TIBET, 13TH CENTURY
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