on ornament, textiles and baldachins depicted on the ceilings of buddhist cave temples in khartse valley, western tibet. form, function and meaning

Autor: Kalantari, Christiane und Gyalpo, Tsering

Veröffentlichungsdatum: 28 Jan 2013 15:14

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URN: urn:nbn:de:0009-23-27670


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Sprache: Deutsch

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Paintings of textiles and ornament on ceilings of early Western Himalaya Buddhist temples have an important role to play in the experience of sacred space and religious meaning. Roger Goepper (1993 , 1995 ) was one of the first Western scholars to point out the importance of textile depictions and ceiling decoration in the art of Alchi/ Ladakh (ca 1200). Various other researchers, focusing in particular on the Assembly Hall of Tabo/ Spiti, Himachal Pradesh (mid. 11th C), elucidated specific aspects of ceiling depictions as purely decorative elements, imitations of textile patterns (Wandl 1996) or focused on the possible function of ornamental depictions as honorific covers as suggested for earlier ceiling paintings in Dunhuang by Whitfield & Farrer 1990 and Whitfield 1996 . Giuseppe Tucci (1935) was the first to interpret early Western Himalayan temple’s ceilings as symbolic representations of canopies, which was later adopted by Klimburg-Salter 1996 , 1997 , 2001 for various distinctive types of ceilings in Afghanistan and Western Tibet. However, collating new data from examples of this genre of painting during different periods as a single corpus allows a fresh perspective on the genre of ceiling designs and gives insights into structural principles of this long and refined artistic expression as well as the interpretation of their meaning within the architectonic tradition of Western Tibet temples and their overall iconographic programmes.


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