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Native NameThangka
Object Number:A1092
Current Location: Collections Storage
Provenience: Tibet
Date Made: 18th Century
Early Date: 1700
Late Date: 1799
Iconography:Upasaka Dharmatala
Inscription Language:Tibetan Language
Credit Line:Purchased from W. O. Oldman, 1911
Other Number:GETZ 283 - Other Number
9859 - Oldman Number


Thangka painting, with the central figure of Dharmatala. The painting shows five figures identifiable by their iconography, as well as by labels in Tibetan script. The central figure is Upasaka Dharmatala (label = dharma.ta) shown with his standard attributes: a flywhisk, a tiger, an incense burner, a case of books at his back, a circular canopy above his head, and a Buddha that he is visualizing in in a wisp of cloud in front of him. Dharmata is one of two figures often added to Tibetan thangka sets depicting Śakyamuni and the 16 Arhats. The other figure is Hva shang who resembles the Chinese Budai 布袋 iconography.

The two figures above, seated, with halos behind their tonsured heads, are two of the Sixteen Arhats.Top right is the Arhat Subinda (Ch. Xupintuo 蘇頻陀, Lha. Michepa, WT, seated on a throne holding a miniature stupa, and adored by a bearded Central Asian with a dish of offerings. Top left is the Arhat Gopaka/Jīvaka (Ch. Shubojia 戍博迦, Lha. Bejepa, WT, holding a Tibetan-style book. Below Dharmatala are two of the Four Guardians of the Directions. On the right is Vaiśravaṇa (Ch. Duo wen tian wang 多聞天王, Lha. Namtösé, WT. rnam.thos.sras) holding his jewel-producing mongoose. On the left is Virūpākṣa (Ch. Guang mu tian wang 廣目天王, Lha. Chen Mi Zang, WT spyan.mi.bzang) holding a stupa in his hand. Rocks in Chinese Style. This composition belongs to a seven painting set depicting Sakyamuni Buddha and the Sixteen Elders.

Current & Past Exhibitions:

Exhibition of the Art of the Far East ( Dec 1914) View Objects in Exhibition


[Catalogue] Getz, John. 1917. The University Museum Section of Oriental Art.. Philadelphia. The University Museum. Actual Citation : Page/Fig./Plate: No. 283View Objects related to this Actual Citation
[Article] Bishop, Carl W. 1914. "Tibetan Sacred Art". The Museum Journal. Philadelphia. The University Museum. Vol. V. no. No. 4. pg. 189-205 Actual Citation : Page/Fig./Plate: 189-205View Objects related to this Actual Citation
[Catalogue, Exhibition] University of Pennsylvania, Office of the President. 1914. Catalogue of an Exhibition of the Art of the Far East.. Philadelphia. Actual Citation : Page/Fig./Plate: Pg. 9-10, No. 13View Objects related to this Actual Citation

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