Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Vajrapani (Bodhisattva & Buddhist Deity) - Bodhisattva

ཕྱག་ན་རྡོ་རྗེ། 金刚手菩萨
(item no. 13443)
Origin Location Tibet
Date Range 1100 - 1199
Lineages Buddhist
Material Metal, Mercuric Gild
Collection Private
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Deity

Appearance: Peaceful

Gender: Male

Interpretation / Description

Vajrapani, Bodhisattva. This object is most likely from a three sculpture set representing the Three Lords of the World.

Depictions of Vajrapani and Vajrasattva in sculpture and painting are commonly confused with the similar deities Vairochana Buddha, Vajradhara, Vajrapani, Vajravidarana, the Five Symbolic Buddhas in Sambhogakaya form, White Chakrasamvara and others.

In a number of Yoga Tantra examples the form of Vajrapani, in the Sarvadurgati Parishodhana Tantra system, appears exactly the same in appearance as the typical 'Solitary Hero' Vajrasattva. A sculpture of the primordial Buddha Vajradhara has the exact same physical iconographic appearance as Heruka Vajrasattva - also depicted with the two hands holding a vajra and bell crossed in embrace holding the consort.

In paintings the Heruka Vajrasattva would be painted white while the Vajradhara form always appears blue in colour. In physical appearance Vajrasattva and Vajravidarana are only different because Vajrasattva holds a single vajra scepter while Vajravidarana holds a double vajra scepter. Vajravidarana can also appear in either a white, green or blue form.

Jeff Watt 9-2017

Secondary Images
Related Items
Thematic Sets
Collection: Kapoor Galleries (Masterworks)
Collection: Kapoor Galleries
Buddhist Deity: Vajrapani Standing (Masterworks)
Collection: Sotheby's Hong Kong (Painting & Sculpture. October, 2017)
Buddhist Deity: Vajrapani, Peaceful (Standing Sculpture)
Buddhist Deity: Vajrapani Main Page
Buddhist Deity: Vajrapani, Peaceful Forms (Early Sculpture)