The Four Harmonious Brothers Reach The Fruit Of The Tree
The four brothers are in harmony as they traverse the Himalayan foothills in this gorgeously coloured thangka. Ample verdure coats the numerous hills dotting the landscape. Deep blue waters, abound with life and motion, punctuate the same. Some of the taller hills are covered with snow, their cloud-kissed peaks painted with a skill endemic to Tibetan and Nepalese thangka painters. In the centre are the four brothers, each arranged on top of the other in terms of seniority (partridge over the rabbit, over the monkey, over the elephant). A recurring motif in Buddhist-inspired visual arts, this arrangement conveys the importance in Buddhist tradition of honouring age above nobility or greatness or learning.It all started when the brothers fell out with each other, and in a state of mutual discord turned to discussing the age of the banyan tree (which has been painted ahead of the brothers in the direction they are taking). While the elephant remembers it as a bush from his childhood, the monkey remembers it as a mere shrub and the rabbit as a leafless sapling. However, it is the partridge that had carried its very seed in his body and planted it there, so he is the one sits above the rest of his brothers. This is the Tittira Jataka parable that the Buddha had narrated to teach his disciples that age comes above everything else. In fact, it is this arrangement that enables the partridge to reach for the fruit of the banyan tree to share with his brothers._x000D_
Tibetan Thangka Painting_x000D_Size of Painted Surface 13 inch X 16.5 inch_x000D_Size with Brocade 23.5 inch X 37 inch_x000D_
At The Core Of Tibetan Culture
The sheer diversity to be discovered in the artistic milieu of Tibet betrays the fact that either the ateliers of different sixteenth-century cities had considerable means of communication or the artists were actually itinerant. Because very few thangkas from before the thirteenth century have survived the ravages of time, the rich divinations made are drawn from sculptures and manuscript illustrations. While the largest influence on Tibetan art has been art from further southwards - the subcontinent - the visualisation of even similar deities are fascinatingly distinct. Scholars explain this by citing that the information flow between the two regions had been textual and verbal, which left Tibetan painters free to forge their own style. The Pala kingdom (eighth-twelfth century) of Northeastern India has had the most conspicuous influence on thangkas, of all other Indian influences that could be deduced. While most of Pala art is lost to us, we could gauge from sculptures and manuscrips illustrations the adornments, the elongated eyes and lashes, and the aquiline noses. Upon the Islamicisation of North India, some of the Indian Pala Buddhists put together a small community in Central Tibet and continued to produce their art, with the original Pala influences gradually dwindling. Contemporary thangka artists are no longer dependant on Pala tutelage, and what this endemic art form has evolved to today is the subject of admiration of art devotees across the world.
Thangkas are one of Tibet's most sacred gifts to humankind. Through contemplation on the subjects of the thangkas, the devotee is meant to transcend one's coarse, earthy surroundings into a realm that is defined by compassion and wisdom. Compassion and wisdom lie at the core of modern-day Tibetan culture, having evolved from a warring people with a lust for material conquest. The truth revealed in these thangkas are ultimate and divine, the highest of the high as art flows into every aspect of life - wares, textiles, and home decor and even the home itself. Of superlative gorgeousness and meaning, thangkas are the crown jewel of Tibetan art and culture. It is said that these paintings are the door through which the wisdom and the compassion of the deities emerge shining into our realm of existence.