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The guardian king Vaishravana
Place of Origin: China, Beijing
Date: 1800-1900
Object Name: Thangka
Materials: Colors on cotton
Dimensions: H. 22 5/8 in x W. 16 1/4 in, H. 57.5 cm x W. 41.3 cm (unmounted); H. 37 in x W. 22 1/2 in, H. 94 cm x W. 57 cm (mounted)
Credit Line: Transfer from the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Gift of Katherine Ball
Department: Himalayan Art
Collection: Painting
Object Number: B72D56
On Display: No

Description

Label:

Vaishravana, guardian king of the north, is one of the eight guardians of the Buddhist religion. He is also a god of wealth. Here, Vaishravana sits on a snow lion supported by a lotus pedestal. He can be identified by the symbolic implements he holds: a victory banner and a gem-spouting mongoose. The mongoose symbolizes generosity, for it conquers snakes, which represent greed.

Vaishravana is companioned by the eight horsemen, who carry mongooses and weapons. The guardian Vajrapani, symbolizing the power of all buddhas, is represented at top center. Below Vaishravana is a small pavilion containing more jewels. Scattered below his lotus pedestal and in the foreground of the painting are traditional treasures: gold coins, a flaming pearl, queen's earrings, a branch of coral, a pair of rhinoceros horns, a scroll, king's earrings, and the top portion of a wish-granting wand (ruyi).

This work was painted in Beijing by Mongolian monks at Yonghegong, the so-called Lama Temple.


Label:

Vaishravana, guardian king of the north, is one of the eight guardians of the Buddhist religion. He is also a god of wealth. Here, Vaishravana sits on a snow lion supported by a lotus pedestal. He can be identified by the symbolic implements he holds: a victory banner and a gem-spouting mongoose. The mongoose symbolizes generosity, for it conquers snakes, which represent greed.

Vaishravana is companioned by the eight horsemen, who carry mongooses and weapons. The guardian Vajrapani, symbolizing the power of all buddhas, is represented at top center. Below Vaishravana is a small pavilion containing more jewels. Scattered below his lotus pedestal and in the foreground of the painting are traditional treasures: gold coins, a flaming pearl, queen's earrings, a branch of coral, a pair of rhinoceros horns, a scroll, king's earrings, and the top portion of a wish-granting wand (ruyi).

This work was painted in Beijing by Mongolian monks at Yonghegong, the so-called Lama Temple.