Amitayus, Bodhisattva of Endless Life
Artist/maker unknown, Tibetan
This figure's facial features, jewelry, clothing, and hairstyle clearly reflect a Malla period Newar artistic legacy although this statue was intended for Tibetan Buddhist worship. We know it was made for a Tibetan Buddhist practitioner for two reasons. First, the deity Amitayus never gained precedence in the Newar pantheon. Second, the opaque turquoise and coral stones inset into his jewelry indicate a Tibetan patron since Newars prefer transparent stones. Because of the close artistic exchanges between Nepal and Tibet, however, it remains unclear if this sculpture was made by Newar artists for a Tibetan market or by Tibetan artists in the popular "Newar style."