About this object

Small gilt brass statue of Tse-pa-me or Amitayus. Figure seated in yogic or meditational pose. Both hands holding a vase which contains the nectar of long-life. Out of this vase grows a flowering Ashoka twig. He wears a large vertical five-jewelled crown and the clothes and adornments of the Bodhisattva. The figure is seated on a plain base.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
  • Artist/Maker
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Place made
    Asia: Central Asia: Tibet [China]: Ü-Tsang: Shigatse
  • Date made
  • Materials
    Brass; Gilt Metal; Pigment
  • Location
    World Museum, Level 3, World Cultures
  • Acquisition
    From the Collection of Sir Charles Bell
  • Collector
    Charles Alfred Bell
  • Place collected
    Not recorded
  • Date collected
    6 March 1912
  • Measurements
    135 mm x 100 mm x 75 mm; 5 5/16 in x 3 15/16 in x 2 15/16 in
  • Note
    List of Curios No 152:
    Per Barmiak Lama on 28th January 1913. Image of Tse-pa-me given me by the Tashi [Panchen] Lama on the 6th March 1912... made of brass, new. The Lama thinks there is sacred writing inside the base, as it is sealed up. Images of Tse-pa-me are largely made at Tashi-Lhünpo.

    Curator's note: Bell did not meet with the Panchen Lama in 1912 and this gift may have come via Gould or Macdonald who were stationed at Gyantse and Yatung respectively. Otherwise, the Panchen Lama's Agent could have delivered this gift to Bell, on behalf of the Panchen Lama, in Sikkim or in Kalimpong. Bell describes visiting the workshops that make the statues, during his visit in 1906, in his book, ''Tibet: Past & Present', 'A visit to the Tashi Lama's metal factory found only some thirty artisans at work. They were engaged in turning out five hundred images of the god, Tse-pa-me, 'Eternal Life', for distribution to various monasteries throughout Tibet'.

    Written by Emma Martin
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  • List of Curios

    Bell, Charles Alfred

    Author: Bell, Charles Alfred
    Description: A typed object catalogue from Bell's handwritten notes on a wide variety of objects from his personal collection. This information often contains, the date he obtained an object, its provenance (including where and who he acquired from) and the person responsible for giving him the information. The process of writing the inventory began in December 1912 and continued until the late 1930s.

Object view = Humanities
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