The large golden turtle with the nine numerical squares, sme-ba, at center, surrounded by the eight Chinese trigrams, pa-kua, encircled by the zodiac cycle, flanked by ribbons of the trigrams on either side and with planets of the week days underneath, with the kalachakra in the upper lefthand corner and the nine sme-ba in the upper righthand corner, with Manjushri seated at top center
15 3/8 x 10 5/8 in. (39 x 27 cm.)
The Van Der Wee Collection, Belgium, acquired in Kathmandu, Nepal, November 1975
L. and P. Van der Wee, A Tale of Thangkas: Living with a Collection, 1995, pp.144-146, fig.67
Himalayan Art Resources (, item no.100655
De Taal van de Thangka, Ethnographic Museum, Antwerp, 1995

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Lot Essay

The Sidpaho painting is a collection of astrological, calendar and primary element symbols arranged in a composition intended to be both an instructional tool and auspicious talisman. The central image depicts a yellow tortoise, who is an emanation of the bodhisattva Manjushri, stretched around a mandala-like geometric composition with a circle of nine colored squares, each containing an auspicious number at the center. It is believed that all who view this painting will receive good fortune.

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