Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Teacher (Lama) - Shamarpa 10, Mipam Chodrub Gyatso

བླ་མ། 喇嘛
(item no. 202)
Origin Location Eastern Tibet
Date Range 1700 - 1799
Lineages Kagyu, Karma (Kagyu) and Buddhist
Size 63.50x40.64cm (25x16in)
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Rubin Museum of Art
Catalogue # acc.# F1997.13.1
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Person

Appearance: Monastic

Gender: Male

TBRC: bdr:P831

Interpretation / Description

Mipam Chodrub Gyatso, the 10th Shamarpa (1742-1792); holding a vajra and bell to the heart, he stares with a grimace and wears the red vajra hat.

Sha mar pa Biographical Details

One of the most controversial figures in recent Himalayan history is Shamarpa, the 10th Red Hat Lama of Kamtsang Kagyu (Oral Tradition). Belonging to a wealthy and influential family, Shamarpa was the brother of the 3rd Panchen Lama. After the passing of the Panchen Lama, an unresolved dispute over family inheritance with a younger brother caused Shamarpa to leave central Tibet and eventually arrive in Nepal. Associated with the Nepalese Gurkha invasion of Tibet that was repelled by the Chinese Imperial Army, Shamarpa was believed by the Tibetan government to have committed treason. From that time until the 1950s, the incarnation line of the Shamarpa has been banned by the Tibetan Government in Lhasa. In the early 1950s, a new reincarnate lama of the Shamar lineage, the 12th Shamar, was discovered and enthroned by the 16th Karmapa.

This portrait, likely painted during his lifetime, is a good example of the new painting style which appears to be coming out of the Dege Region of Kham and specifically the Palpung Monastery of Situ Panchen Chokyi Jungne.

Jeff Watt 11-2000

Related Items
Publication: Worlds of Transformation
Iconography Main Page
Bibliography: Iconography Publications

Thematic Sets
Painting Style: Kham Region (Kham-ri)
Painting Set: Karma Kagyu Lineage (Sertreng, misc.)
Tibet: Yangpachen Monastery
Teacher: Shamar 10th, Chodrub Gyatso
Painting Style: Palpung Monastery
Collection of RMA: Painting Masterworks Page
Collection of RMA: Persons Masterworks
Subject: Teachers Masterworks Page
Tradition: Marpa/Dagpo Kagyu Iconography
Subject: Hats (Karma Kagyu)
Incarnation Lineage: Shamarpa Main Page
Teacher: Shamarpa (Paintings)
Painting Style: Palpung - Teachers & Siddhas
Teacher: Shamarpa (Masterworks)
Painting Style: Palpung Monastery (Masterworks)
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Painting Gallery 2
Tradition: Marpa/Dagpo Kagyu Masterworks
Subject: Hats (Cap Style)
Subject: Hats (Kagyu)
Tradition: Kagyu Teachers (Paintings)
Tradition: Karma Kagyu Main Page
Painting Style: Minimalism & Minimalist Landscape