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1037 Tibetan Thangka Depicting Amitabha in Sukhavati, late 19th/early 20th century, painted on cloth, centered by Amitabha (Buddha of boundless light) surrounded by the lush western paradise known as Sukhavati, and other celestial beings, all above a representation of the human realm. h. 33-1/2", w. 43-1/2"
Estimate: 700 - 1000
1044 Rare Painting of Fudo Myoo, Japanese, 18th century, ink, color and gold on silk laid down on paper, the imposing, blue-bodied figure with furious face, depicted seated on an elaborately decorated plinth-form throne, wearing sumptuously patterned robes to his lower half and draped across one shoulder, with embossed detail throughout, holding his traditional attributes of "The Great Sword of Wisdom" in one hand and a woven lasso in the other, with stylized flames in vibrant oranges and reds swirling behind, rising to take Garuda form, mounted in later frame. 80-1/2" x 39-1/2" Provenance: Manheim Galleries, New Orleans, Louisiana, ca. 1959. Notes: This imposing portrait represents the much revered Buddhist deity Fudo Myoo, "The King of Immovable Wisdom" and chief of the Five Wisdom Kings celebrated in Japanese Esoteric Buddhism. With the Sanskrit name of Acala, known as Candarosana in Tibet and Nepal, and recognized in the Tangmi traditions of China, he is one of the few deities to transcend all sects of the Buddhist faith. Despite his many names, he is instantly recognizable due to his unmistakable appearance. Much of the iconography evident in works depicting Fudo are widely acknowledged to have been originally drawn from an early 8th century text, the Dainichi Sutra, which gives details of Fudo's body as typically blue or black, and engulfed in flame. He is said to hold the sword of wisdom in his right hand and a lasso in his left, and his expression is one of anger. The ferocious appearance of Fudo Myoo is also a trait seen in the other Wisdom Kings, but is accepted as coming from a place of compassion, to act as a reminder to follow the path to enlightenment. The five, and Fudo in particular, are know as the fearsome and resolute protectors of Buddhist law, burning away harmful obstacles and feelings that could hinder one's path to enlightenment. Fudo is said to battle evil with immovable faith, hence his given name, cutting through ignorance and ties to negative feelings with his sword, and capturing and binding all demons with his lasso. Due to the important role Fudo Myoo plays in the Buddhist faith, his likeness is the most widely represented of all the buddhist Kings of Japan, in both sculptural and painted form. However, to find a painting of the size, condition and quality offered here is extremely rare. This impressive work is as striking for its vibrant colors and skillful detail as much for its powerful subject matter. The artist, through creating this sumptuous visual representation of Fudo, is showing respect for the deity and his powers, carefully adorning his fierce body with accessories and decorations, and using the most luxurious pigments and materials available for the time, particularly notable in the amount of embossed gold embellishments seen here.
Estimate: 30000 - 50000
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