Despite the title given by the artist, this print is a highly abstracted representation of a famous 7th century sculpture of the bodhisattva Avalokitesvara (J. Kannon), in the collection of Hôryûji Temple, Nara.
This is one of a series of prints by the artist portraying famous Buddhist sculptures of Nara (the capital of Japan in the 8th century and a major monastic center). Several other prints from this series are in UMMA's collections.
A portable painting (thangka) in gouache and gold pigment on sized cotton, framed with concentric borders of red and yellow figures silk, with an outer border of white satin with embroidered floral designs. The painting is designed to be rolled up when not in use.
A representation of one of the Dhyana Buddhas of Tibetan Buddhism, possibly Amitayus, surrounded by images of other deities and major gurus (teachers).
A portable painting, with gouache pigments on sized cotton, bordered by three strips of Chinese brocade. The painting is designed to be rolled up when not in use.
This painting is a diagrammatic representation of the transmission of teachings within the Gelugpa School of Tibetan Buddhism. Tsongkhapa (1357 - 1419), the founder of the school, wearing the Gelugpa yellow hat and flanked by two lotus blossoms, is seated at the heart of a vast array of figures. Below him, forming the mountain on which he sits, are row upon row of the meditational deities revered by the school, including Buddhas, bodhisattvas, and deified lamas (teachers), as well as the fierce ‘dharmapala’ deities (protectors of the faith). At the side, seated in large numbers on billowing clouds, are teachers in the Gelugpa lineage. The ascetic figures at the top center, above Tsongkhapa, represent famous Indian mahasiddas, yogis who have mastered tantric teachings.
There are many variants of such lineage diagrams among the schools of Tibetan Buddhism. They type is known by many names, including “Assembly Tree,” “Merit Field,” “Refuge Field,” or “Field of Accumulation”; in Tibetan, the generic term is “tsog shing.”