Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Teacher (Lama) - Karmapa 15, Kakyab Dorje

བླ་མ། 喇嘛
(item no. 798)
Origin Location Eastern Tibet
Date Range 1900 - 1959
Lineages Karma (Kagyu)
Size 83.82x54.61cm (33x21.50in)
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Rubin Museum of Art
Catalogue # acc.# P1998.32.5
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Person

TBRC: bdr:P563

Interpretation / Description

Kakyab Dorje, the 15th Karmapa, (1871-1922): patron of publications, scholar and practitioner.

Kar ma pa Biographical Details

With a slight smile and a penetrating gaze he holds in the right hand a golden vajra scepter to the heart. The left holds a bell at the waist. The fingers of both hands hold the stems of two pink lotus flowers supporting a blue wisdom sword and Prajnaparamita book. The head is adorned with the black vajra crown, a synthesis of the gift of the dakinis and the offering of Emperor Yung Lo. Wearing orange and red robes assembled from discarded strips of cloth and a dark red meditation cloak he sits atop an orange cushion above an ornate snow lion supported throne with a backrest of carved dragon heads. The table in front supports a damaru drum, cup, bowl of offerings and a golden vessel. In front, precious wish-fulfilling jewels are arranged in a pile. Recognized as the 15th Karmapa by such notables as Jamgon Kongtrul and Kyentse Wangpo, these two amongst others would be his main teachers. Well versed in the Rime collections, the Kagyu, Nyingma and Shangpa traditions, Kakyab Dorje was an exemplary practitioner and scholar.

Jeff Watt 2-99

Related Items
Thematic Sets
Tradition: Kagyu Teachers (Paintings)
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Painting Gallery 8
Teacher: Karmapa Khakhyab Dorje, 15th (Lama)
Painting Set: Karmapa Set (14)
Incarnation Lineage: Gyalwa Karmapa Main Page