By David Jackson
The current booklet is a primary try out at exploring the sacred portray traditions of Tibet from the mid-15th via twentieth centuries at the foundation of either the surviving pictorial continues to be and the large written assets that continue to exist within the Tibetan language. The research of this era of Tibetan paintings heritage has in impression been ignored lately in want of the earliest sessions. but the majority of extant masterpieces of Tibetan Buddhist portray belong to this more moderen interval, and the correct written and pictorial assets now to be had, although they've got by no means been absolutely applied in the past, are actually particularly wealthy. the current learn makes an attempt within the first position to spot the nice founders of the most colleges of Tibetan portray and to find references to their surviving works of sacred artwork. via recourse to the artists personal writings, if to be had, to the biographies in their major buyers, and to different contemporaneous or approximately contemporaneous assets, it's been attainable to elucidate some of the situations of the careers of such recognized Tibetan painters as sMan-bla-don-grub, mKhyen-brtse-chen-mo and Nam-mkha-bkra-shis, who have been the founders of the sMan-ris, mKhyen-ris and Karma sgar-bris traditions, respectively. For the ease of scholars and researchers, the booklet incorporates a survey of the most on hand Tibetan resources and stories, either conventional and smooth, in addition to a close precis of prior Western study in this topic. It additionally offers the texts and translations of an important passages from the most conventional assets. This richly illustrated quantity additionally contains targeted indices, and it'll be an necessary consultant and reference paintings for someone attracted to Tibetan artwork.
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Extra resources for A History of Tibetan Painting
In every case, one should strive to identifY and obtain exact information about the lineage in question. The Tibetan records of teachings received (thob yig or gsan yig) are a gold mine in this respect, though none have yet been indexed or translated. Those who cannot read Tibetan should at least check the English translation of the Blue Annals to see whether the relevant lineage is described there. 30 Huntington criticizes M. Aris (1985) for overemphasizing the value of"the Tibetan literary sources, which alone might be used to throw new light on the complex and diversified forms ofTibetan art ....
From that tradition there then developed the "New" Menri school (Mensar, sMan-gsar) in the 17th century. Finally the Karma-Gadri school (Karma-sgar-bris), which emerged in about 1500 and which still exists today, united within itself srylistic elements from three lands: Indian forms, with Chinese colors and textures, as well as Tibetan compositional techniques. Also many of the artists mentioned in the Tibetan literary works must be considered as legendary. Presumably the "Tibetan texts" or "literary works" from which Goepper drew his conclusions were a single main source: the recent manual of the Gling-tshang Karma-sgar-bris artist Gega Lama (1983).
The painting cannot possibly date to before the 1730s, and in fact it probably is a still later copy. Though the book could have benefitted from additional refinement in its treatment of post1450 styles, in general its scholarship was quite solid, combining as it did intensive attention to both art-historical questions and the relevant written sources (and not neglecting to seek the help of learned Tibetans when possible). In fact, it set a new standard for museum catalogues of Tibetan collections.
A History of Tibetan Painting by David Jackson