Tibetan Silver from the Collection of Julian Sands

Ahmanson Building, Level 4
May 11, 2012–May 19, 2013

This spectacular group of silver ceremonial vessels, recently donated to LACMA by Julian Sands, originally graced Tibetan Buddhist altars. The ewer, called "Monk's Hat" after the distinctive caps worn by some Tibetan Buddhist monks, is used to pour sanctified water into offering bowls; the censer is used for the ritualized burning of incense. The offering bowls, elegant in their formal simplicity and resplendence, are adorned with cusped cartouches that contain a stylized representation of the Chinese character for longevity (shou) combined with auspicious swastikas, an ancient pan-Asian solar motif. The exquisite gold and silver filigree fittings on the vase suggest it was made in Tibet by a Newar artist, as this major Nepalese ethnic group was known for the finest metalworking. Together, these  outstanding ritual vessels augment the museum’s holdings of Himalayan metalware.

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Image: 'Monk's Hat' Ewer, Tibet, late 19th century, Parcel-gilt silver repoussé, 9 3/8 x 8 3/4 x 6 1/2 in. (23.81 x 22.23 x 16.51 cm), Gift of Julian Sands, M.2011.157.1.

Offering Bowl for Water
Tibet
mid-20th century
Censer
Tibet
late 19th century
Vase of Immortality with the Head of a Wind-Horse and a Precious Jewel
Tibet (by a Newar artist)
18th-early 19th century
Offering Bowl for Water
Tibet
mid-20th century