Luxury Design, Past & Present

A figure of a Bodhisattva, Gilt Bronze with semi-precious stone inlay, Nepal, 14th century - image 1 of 3

Gilt Copper
Circa 14th century
8 ½ x 6 ⅜ in. [21.5 x 16.2 cm]
Provenance: Private European
collection, acquired by inheritance

Seated with legs crossed, his right
hand raised in abhaya mudra and the
left resting on his knee, adorned with
various jewelry and sashes splayed
out below his ankles, the face with
benevolent expression and downcast
eyes, surmounted by an elaborate
headdress topped with a half-vajra.
The solid casting and the seat with
one leg folded over the other rather
than in the more typical meditation
posture are unique features found in
bodhisattva figures from Malla period
Nepal. The beak-like nose and bowed
lips, as well as the five-part foliate
tiara with ribbons fanning to the side
reveal Newari workmanship, the master artisans from the Kathmandu Valley.
“Both iconographically and stylistically this handsome bronze is closely related to those in the
Rockefeller and Alsdforf collection (Schroeder 1981, figs. 89c, 91d). The posture of the three
figures is an unusual variation of the paryankasana, where both fee are placed on the opposite
thighs. Here only the left sole is visible on the right thigh and so the posture very likely can be
described as ardhaparyanka. Like the posture of Indra, it is less formal and more relaxed than
the classic meditative posture and is different from the more familiar lalitasana, the preferred
posture for bodhisattvas… Another distinctive feature of all three figures is the design of the
tiara, which has five instead of the usual three crests.” (Pal 2003, pg. 91) As Dr. Pal notes in
regards to a larger slightly earlier image in similar unusual posture, this marvelous Newari
bronze depicts a richly adorned figure showcasing the skill and devotion of Malla period

Nepal Bodhisattva- 1
Asian Art
6" (15 cm)
8" (20 cm)
18th Century and Earlier

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A figure of a Bodhisattva, Gilt Bronze with semi-precious stone inlay, Nepal, 14th century

Price Upon Request