Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Portrait of Munchen Sangye Rinchen, the Eighth Abbot of Ngor Monastery

Date:
late 16th century
Culture:
Tibet
Medium:
Distemper and gold on cloth
Dimensions:
Image: 30 5/8 x 26 3/16 in. (77.8 x 66.5 cm) Mount: 49 3/16 x 26 3/16 in. (124.9 x 66.5 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1971
Accession Number:
1971.176
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 253
This tangka belongs to a set of portraits entitled the “Path with the Fruit Gurus and Ngor Abbots.” Munchen Sangye Rinchen, the abbot of Ngor monastery (1513–16), holds a book and sits on a lion throne under a lobed arch studded with lotus buds. Immediately above is the Buddha attaining enlightenment, accompanied by additional Buddhist deities and patriarchs of the Sakya monastic lineage. In the lower register are red and blue wrathful protective deities and the four lokapalas, or guardian kings, shown in yellow. During this abbot’s tenure, the monastery was at the zenith of its power, holding political control over the Ü and Tsang provinces of central and western Tibet.
Signature: Lengthy inscription on reverse
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Art of the Himalayas," December 15, 2010–December 4, 2011.

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