Giclee Print by Robert Beer
Nyingma Protector and Yidam Deity Assembly :
This gold-on-black thangka depicts an assembly of twelve of the main meditational or yidam deities and important protectors of the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. The iconographical designs for many of these figures are based on the drawings of an accomplished Sherpa artist and yogin-practitioner named Gomchen Oleshey (1924-83), who lived in semi-retreat in his Himalayan hermitage in the Solu Khumbu district of northeast Nepal. Oleshey made these drawings in the late 1970's at the behest of His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche (1904-87), basing their iconography on an art treatise compiled by the great Nyingma scholar, Jamgon Mipham Rinpoche (1846-1912). The collection of ninety-four deities and lineage holders that Oleshey drew in the early 1970's for Dudjom Rinpoche's 'History of the Nyingma Dharma' were first published in Nepal in the Kailash Journal for Himalayan Studied (Volume III, 1975), under the title of 'The Nyingma Icons'. The twelve deities illustrated in this composition are:
1. Guru Rinpoche and Mandarava (top center).
2. Yeshe Tsogyal (upper center).
3. Dorje Drolo (top left).
4. Vajrakila (top right).
5. Four-armed Mahakala (upper left).
6. Maning Mahakala (upper right).
7. Legden Mahakala (center).
8. Mahadeva and Consort (lower left).
9. Shanpa Marnag (lower right)
10. Rahula (bottom left).
11. Ekajati (bottom center).
12. Dorje Legpa (bottom right).