Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Teacher (Lama) - Taglung Tangpa Chenpo

བླ་མ། 喇嘛
(item no. 30659)
Origin Location Tibet
Date Range 1200 - 1299
Lineages Kagyu, Taklung (Kagyu) and Buddhist
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Private
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Person

Appearance: Monastic

Gender: Male

TBRC: bdr:P2649

Interpretation / Description

Taglung Tangpa Chenpo, Tashi Pel (1142-1210): founder of Taglung Monastery (1180), central Tibet - north of Lhasa, the head monastery for the Taglungpa sub-lineage of the Kagyu School. (See HAR #23507).

Biographical Details

Handsome with black hair, he sits facing forward with the eyes slightly lowered. The two hands perform the mudra (gesture) of teaching, held at the heart with the eight fingers splayed in similitude of an eight spoked Dharma wheel. Wearing the orange and red robes of a monk and an outer meditation cloak gold in colour, the two legs are crossed in vajra posture, right over left. The top of the head adorned with an orange cap and a green nimbus frames the body as he sits atop a multi-coloured lotus and ornate lion supported throne. Below that is a temple courtyard scene with three gold stupas at the left, seated and meditating monks, buildings and historical structures.

At the top center is Pagmodrupa Dorje Gyalpo (1110-1170) the teacher of Taglung Tangpa Chenpo.

Biographical Details

In the top register, beginning at the left side are Naropa, Tilopa, Vajradhara, Pagmodrubpa, Marpa, Milarepa and finally Gampopa.

Descending at the left are the Direction Guardian Virudhaka, Buddha Shakyamuni surrounded by four students, Sahaja Heruka Chakrasamvara, and another figure of Taglung Tangpa Chenpo and finally the Direction Guardian Dhritarashtra.

Descending at the right are the Direction Guardian Virupaksha, Chaturbhuja Lokeshvara, Vajravarahi, a third figure of Taglung Tangpa Chenpo, followed by the Direction Guardian Vaishravana.

Along the bottom, from left to right, is the donor figure wearing lay attire and seated before an assortment of offerings. Continuing from the left is Heruka, Chaturbhuja Mahakala with four hands, Aparajita, Artasiddhi Vajravarahi with four hands, Kurukulla with four hands and the Two-faced Vajravarahi.

(For additional information on painting style and art history see Notes on a Taglung Portrait by Jane Casey Singer).

Jeff Watt 7-2013

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