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Sakya Raktayamari Initiation with Lineage and Landscape

Artist/maker unknown, Tibetan

Made in Tibet, Asia

c. Late 17th - 18th century

Colors on cloth; cloth mounting

Image: 24 1/2 x 18 1/2 inches (62.2 x 47 cm) Mount: 46 x 24 1/2 inches (116.8 x 62.2 cm) Frame: 51 3/4 × 30 3/4 × 2 3/4 inches (131.4 × 78.1 × 7 cm)

Curatorial Department:
South Asian Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Gift of Stella Kramrisch, 1959

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This extraordinary painting depicts a monastic initiation into the worship of Raktayamari, the red-skinned, life-prolonging deity at top center. The central monk officiates, pouring a golden libation on the initiate seated in the lower-left corner. Table altars placed in front of both figures are set with ritual items. Bolts of silk, stacks of books, a bundle of rolled paintings, and stuffed brown sacks-given by the initiate to finance this expensive ritual-surround the young monk. In the lower-right corner rides the protective goddess Paldan Lhamo with her pair of dice, a disease-filled bag, and a magic thread ball that she uses to determine the lifespan of individuals.

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