Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Arhat/Sthavira (Buddhist Elder)

གནས་བརྟན། 罗汉
(item no. 496)
Origin Location China
Date Range 1800 - 1899
Lineages Uncertain
Size 85.09x53.98cm (33.50x21.25in)
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Rubin Museum of Art
Catalogue # acc.# F1996.27.9
Painting School Provincial
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Person

Interpretation / Description

Arhats (Tibetan: dra chom pa. English: Foe Destroyer): 8 of the 16 Arhats, Dharmatala and 2 of the Direction Guardians. This painting belongs as a set with number 495 which contains the remaining Arhats.

Along the top from left to right (facing) are the arhats Bakula (1) holding a mongoose in the right hand, Rahula (2) with both hands holding a jewelled crown, Cudapathaka (3) with both hands folded in the mudra of meditation.

2nd row; arhat Nagasena (4) holding a staff in the right hand and a bowl in the left, Pantaka (5) with the right hand performing the mudra of blessing and the left holding a book in the lap, Pindola Bharadvaja (6) with the right hand holding up a book and the left supporting a bowl in the lap.

3rd row; arhat Gopaka (7) holding a book with both hands and Abheda (8) holding a caitya (reliquary symbol) with both hands. Each of the arhats has a shaved head and wears the robes of the clergy (sangha). At the right side is the lay attendant Dharmatala holding a fly-whisk in the right hand and a vase in the left. He wears long flowing robes of various colours and sits in a western style seat with a tiger lying by his side.

At the bottom left is the Direction Guardian Virupaksha, red in colour, holding a caitya. At the right is the leader, Vaishravana, holding a victory banner in the right hand and a mongoose in the left. Surrounded by dark billowing blue-black smoke and fire they wear gold and jewels, body armour and fine silks of various colours.

Jeff Watt 10-98

Reverse of Painting
Special Features: (includes "Om Ah Hum" inscription)

Related Items
Thematic Sets
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Painting Gallery 3
Painting Set: Arhats: Multiple Main Figures
Painting Style: Chinese
Arhat: Abheda Main Page/Sthavira
Arhat/Sthavira: Bakula Main Page
Arhat/Sthavira: Gopaka Main Page
Arhat/Sthavira: Nagasena Main Page
Arhat/Sthavira: Pindola Bharadvaja Main Page
Arhat/Sthavira: Rahula Main Page
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Arhat/Sthavira
Collection: Christie's, New York (Painting. September 15, 2015)
Painting Set: Arhat Set XXIX