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Tantric Temple Banner of a Dancing Goddess Flanked by Dakinis

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

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


17th century



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


Tantric Temple Banner of a Dancing Goddess Flanked by Dakinis


Nepal (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Pigments and black ink on cloth


124.5 × 231.1 cm (49 × 91 in.)

Credit Line

James W. and Marilynn Alsdorf Collection

Reference Number


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