Subject:Re: What Era Lokapala
Posted By: Sat, Aug 25, 2012 IP: 18.104.22.168
This will be my last response on this topic too, but after your post in " Jade Item " Aug 14, I feel that I have to respond as you keep on hammering on my lack of contribution on the Lokapala post in contrast to yours.
I again state that I will not easily shout "new" or "authentic" based on images alone, but I have made it pretty clear that I think the items in question here are contemporary.
You try and belittle what I said in this particular post (in your Aug 23 post under Jade Item)by stating that I am unaware of the function of Lokapala - they are not Temple items yet in your own post in this specific thread on Aug 22 you yourself say that Lokapala were placed in Temples, a real contradiction of your own opinion.
I feel it is important to look at stylistic execution of images when one can't handle the item in question and this is what I tried to indicate from the beginning.
I will not repeat what I said earlier but will add the following:
Lokapala means Loka - world - and Pala - Protector - and in pre Buddhist context they were the four universal protectors. Integrated into Buddhism Lokapala were placed in TEMPLES, tombs and cave dwellings etc. This bit of History is very important to consider when you aim to discuss an image of a Lokapala because their roles as Protectors are important.
You keep on saying that the four images are Tang Lokapala and I am saying to you they are NOT for the following STYLISTIC reasons:
1. TANG Lokapala are depicted STANDING Adam, Why? because they are usually PROTECTORS of Buddha and in Tombs they usually guard crucial points such as entrances. Deities stand and sit, disciples kneel or sit, but PROTECTORS stand. Asian Artists did not depict important figures such as Lokapala lolling on their backsides. That should be the first red light with these images. And NO I am not saying that it is impossible to have a seated guarding (earth spirits sit)and I suppose Lokapala could too although I have never handled an authentic one in 20 years.
2. Adam, secondly Lokapala should be fitted with shin guards, and other armor such as stomach and breast plates (please refer to your image that you posted to confirm) as it is difficult to protect and fight when you have to run around in a long flowing robe. That should be red light number two.
3. The stylistic execution of the jewellery and crowns hover between Sui, Northern Qi, Tang and Song pointing to a very confused Tang artist. Further they are seated on Root wood stools, a style that became popular in the Qing Dynasty - this amalgamation of styles is red light number three.
4. You say that you see no signs of powdered pigment. Adam, pigment is a colored powder mixed into various substances to create various mediums. The yellow, vermillion and pistachio clearly shown is PIGMENT. Pigment is a term used within my idiotic circle to refer to color and it is generally excepted that people with a little bit of knowledge will be able to determine what base pigment is used depending on the medium it is applied to. I chose powdered pigment as reproductions are finished in two phases: first pigment is mixed with water and a little binding medium which is applied in recessed areas in a thick layer, this is then heated and scraped with a wire brush. A second coat of pigment and water is then washed over, and it is this layer that is easily wiped away while settling in small grooves. Unfortunately, or fortunately, this exposes later carving lines such as the lines I pointed out on the bottoms of the figures. Red light number four.
5. As you are an expert on Tang Lokapala I can't believe that you overlooked the presence of demons. Yes I am looking for demons, most Tang Lokapala show at least two of the four with a demon trampled under the foot - again this is to put fear into other demons and show the power of a Lokapala - Adam, this is why the guys wear boots!!. Red Light number Five.
6. I expected you to go foraging through my posts to try and make a point. Thank you for placing my wooden carving within this post. You made another post saying that this particular image is new and I still maintain it is 18th Century. You said that LEE is one of the few people you trust on the forum and LEE confirmed some valid points regarding my wooden carving: a; due to the age my carving weighs virtually nothing and is paper light and b: the grain is even and not scraped away artificially and c: please look at the wear on the other images which is consistent with wear associated with a wood carving of this period, province and wood type. I do not have to tell you what province it is from nor do I have to give you the genus of wood as I am sure you know....?
Lastly I never said the figure was 1700 .... Any person moving within Chinese circles would no it is EXTREMELY IGNORANT AND TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE to use the term CIRCA and a specific date unless a piece is inscribed.
Please have a look at my response on the comment you made on the Qing Dynasty Temple Vase posted by Greg, hopefully you learn something there.
Like I said I will no longer entertain posts from you as some people are totally closed to polite interaction.