Incarnated goddess


“Art, Sculpture, Beauty, Goddess”. Zanabazar and his everlasting masterpiece, Green Tara, would cross the mind of every Mongolian who heard these words. There are countless artworks that are unique and appealing to the eyes and mind, and which were created with clear intellect, limitless visualization and deft craftiness by Mongolians in the international arts and cultural scene. One of them is deservedly Green Tara, the best of the thousands of masterpieces.
Before introducing Green Tara , it is appropriate to discuss Zanabazar, the first theocratic king, wise craftsman, sculptor and astrologer. He was the eldest son of Gombodorj, the direct descendant of Chingis Khan. He was proclaimed to be the religious leader of Central Mongolia for he was selected by Tibetan wisemen as a reincarnation of the ancient god. An extraordinarily astute child, when he was 14 years old, in 1640, he was sent to Tibet to study the four wisdoms: astrology, medicine, sculpting and mantra. He lifted Mongolian culture to another level by establishing a great number of temples and monasteries and developing every kind of art, including painting, sculpture and applique, in a bid to advance and invest in Mongolian culture and the Mongolian people’s mindset. Moreover he created a new alphabet, whose first letter “Soyombo” is in the national flag and which symbolizes freedom, independence, co-existence, safety and peace.
Now his numerous creations are displayed at the museum in Ulaanbaatar that is named after him. Among the many appealing artworks at the museum Green Tara definitely shines out. A goddess, sitting with her legs half crossed on a base of lotus, who is admired for her straight graceful back, beautiful swan neck and flawless charming face: the perfection of the feminine beauty. Observing attentively, one can see that her eyes and mind are focused on the tiniest points in absolute space, far from reality, contemplating something enigmatic only enlightened persons would understand.
The sculptures of gods were made by casting bronze in a peculiar way, and with a height of 72 cm and width of 46 cm, and were gilded in gold. It’s remarkable that the forehead ornament, earrings, necklaces, bracelets are meticulously designed, especially the pattern of the cloth, to make them look more realistic. UN experts on assessing folk art have confirmed that Zanabazar mastered the wisdom of generalizing and specifying artistic images.
Zanabazar’s creations were adored by the sculptors and craftsmen of Tibet and India where sculpting is highly advanced. It was written in18th century Indian scripture that the eyes of the Tara created by Zanabazar are extensive and serene, a broad generous smile is concealed under the faint smile and the body is as graceful as a swaying tree in the wind – a real goddess.
Many works of Zanabazar, especially Green Tara, have been displayed at Mongolian exhibitions overseas, including in New York, Paris, Vienna. And modern experts have noted that Zanabazar actually made reforms in art by harmonizing religious art and folk art, incarnating goddesses and turning Indian Taras into Mongolian Taras.

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Posted by on Oct 8 2012. Filed under Arts & Culture. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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