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Tantric Temple Banner of a Dancing Goddess Flanked by Dakinis

A work made of pigment and black ink on cloth.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of pigment and black ink on cloth.

Date:

17th century

Artist:

Nepal

About this artwork

This horizontal scroll (bilampo) from Nepal features three dancing Buddhist deities framed within aureoles and interspersed with flowers. The white multi-armed goddess at the center is the largest and most powerful figure and is probably White Tara (the Savioress); she has a third eye and holds a lotus in each of her 18 hands. The goddess is flanked by two bird-headed female attendants, one blue and one green, each wearing a necklace of human skulls and trampling a nude male figure (a symbol of ignorance). These are probably dakinis, tantric sky dancers who play a supportive role helping humans to overcome ignorance. This type of banner was and still is displayed outdoors, often on the walls of a temple, during festivals.

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Arts of Asia

Title

Tantric Temple Banner of a Dancing Goddess Flanked by Dakinis

Origin

Nepal

Date

1601–1700

Medium

Pigment and black ink on cloth

Dimensions

124.5 × 231.1 cm (49 × 91 in.)

Credit Line

James W. and Marilynn Alsdorf Collection

Reference Number

1984.1503

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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