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Hevajra and Nairatmya
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Hevajra and Nairatmya


Description Conservation Provenance Credit
Description Vajrayana, or esoteric Buddhism, uses gender and sexual union to communicate the merging of compassion (male) and wisdom (female) that results in awakening. Here, the wrathful male Buddha Hevajra and his female partner Nairatmya stand in ecstatic embrace. With hair painted the fiery orange of wrathful deities, Hevajra’s eight heads look in all directions. His sixteen hands hold skull cups containing animals (in his eight right hands) and deities representing worldly elements (in his eight left hands): earth, water, air, fire, the moon, the sun, and the gods of death and wealth. He raises two of his four legs in a position of dance, while lunging sideways with the other two. Hevajra wears a garland of fift severed heads, while Nairatmya wears one of skulls.
Conservation

The paint on the head had some minor losses and lifting areas. The fragile areas were consolidated with a butyl methacrylate adhesive that did not cause any visual change in color, matte surface or general appearance of the paint.

Date Description Narrative
7/21/2016ExaminationExamined for accession
7/12/2017TreatmentTreated for exhibition
Provenance Purchased by Walter Hauser [1], Charlottesville, Virginia, 1964-65; given to Walters Art Museum, 2016. [1] Purchased from an unknown dealer or bazaar shop in Kalimpong or Darjeeling in West Bengal
Credit Gift of Walter Hauser, 2016

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Creator
Period
late 14th-15th century
Medium
gilded copper alloy with paint and semiprecious stones
(Metal)
Accession Number
54.3101
Measurements
H of figures: 10 1/16 × W: 8 5/16 × D: 4 1/8 in. (25.5 × 21.1 × 10.5 cm); H of base: 12 × W: 7 1/4 × D: 6 1/8 in. (30.5 × 18.4 × 15.5 cm)
Geographies
  • Tibet (Place of Origin)

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