No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VA… Read more THE TIBETAN AND CHINESE BRONZE COLLECTION OF THE LATE MR. H. J. DA SILVA (1923-1988) THE NETHERLANDS The son of a Cypriot/English mother and a Dutch/Portuguese father, Herbert Juan da Silva was born on 6 July 1923 in Kingston, Jamaica. A year later the family moved to Holland. Inspired by the exotic atmosphere that surrounded him during his childhood, Bert da Silva developed an interest not only in the art of foreign cultures but also in their history, religion and especially their music. He started collecting ethnographic objects and records at an early age with the intention of introducing these foreign cultures to as wide an audience as possible. He founded a record company specialising in world music and during the following years invited dance groups from across the world to perform in Dutch theatres. His first production introduced the 'flamenco puro' to the Dutch public. The concept of exotic music and dance was new and refreshing and soon da Silva was able to introduce his innovative ideas to other European countries. The Fiesta Gitana became a great success and an annual event he organised until his death in 1988. Over the years he brought to European theatres numerous productions from India, Indonesia, Ghana, Guatamala, Japan and Philippines. His work took him to all corners of the world where he was always on the lookout for the opportunity to acquire fine and interesting artefacts. During the late forties and early fifties of the last century da Silva had collected African art but over the years became less attracted to this art form and he decided to sell the collection to raise funds for his new passion, Tibetan Buddhist art. Over the years he had as well built up an extensive collection of Indonesian and Oceanic art. Nevertheless his heart went out to the mystic side of these sacred Buddhist bronzes. During those days, the early fifties, not many collectors in this field were active in Europe. Soon his name became known as an eager collector in this particular field. He visited dealers around Europe where his work brought him and they approached him to offer bronzes. Over the years his collection grew out to the presented collection. The greatest impact on Bert da Silva's new collecting passion was the unexpected meeting with the Belgian optician Eduardo Lingero in 1949 or 1950, who considered himself a reincarnation of a Tibetan lama. At home he regularly dressed himself in a Tibetan lama coat and even had learned to speak Tibetan. Lingero had collected a unique group of Tibetan Buddhist art and knew all collectors in this field. In due course da Silva regarded Lingero as his 'guru' or teacher who had passed over to him the love for these mysterious objects. As da Silva visited Belgium frequently for his work, they were in regular contact. However it was only many years later that da Silva was allowed to see a part of the collection and some years later he was allowed to buy his first, but not his last, bronze from him. In The Hague, his hometown, Bert da Silva kept his impressive collection, now being offered for sale. According to him these artefacts were there to live with, to touch and caress. Therefore he never liked the idea that his entire collection would end up in a museum and we are sure that he will be pleased seeing his collection going over into hands of other lovers of these sacred Buddhist images.

W.E. Clark, Two Lamaistic Pantheons (2 vol.), Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1937; R. de Nebesky-Wojkowitz, Oracles and Demons of Tibet, The Hague, 1956; F. Sierksma, Tibet's Terrifying Deities, The Hague, 1966; A.K. Gordon, The Iconography of Tibetan Lamaism, Tokyo, 1959; L.A. Waddell, The Buddhism of Tibet, Cambridge, 1958; S. Kramrisch, The Art of Nepal, Vienna, 1964; Gallery de Ruimte, Himalayan Art, Eersel; E. Moor, The Hindu Pantheon, Los Angeles, 1976; P. Pal, Bronzes of Kashmir, Graz, 1975; C. Müller and W. Raunig, Der Weg zum Dach der Welt, Innsbruck, 1982; E. Waldschmidt, Nepal, The Hague, 1964; D.I. Lauf, Das Erbe Tibet, Bern, 1972; W. Schulemann, Buddhistische Kunst aus dem Himalaya, Köln, 1974 (2x); A. Grünwedel, Buddhist Art
in India
, London, 1965; M. Singh, L'Art de l'Himalaya, Unesco, 1968; L. Jisl, Mongolei, Prague, 1960; E. Bryner, Thirteen Tibetan Tankas, Colorado, 1956; B.C. Olschak, Mystik und Kunst Alttibets, Bern, 1972; H. Uhlig, Tantrische Kunst des Buddhismus, Berlin, 1981; P. Pal, Art of Tibet, Los Angeles, 1983; Masterpieces of Chinese Tibetan Buddhist Altar Fittings in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, 1971; W. Forman and B. Rintschen, Lamaistische Tanzmasken, Leipzig, 1967; Dr. W. Konig, Mongolei, Leipzig, 1967; A. Mookerjee and M. Khamma, The Tantric Way, London, 1977; S. Hummel, Die Lamaistische Kunst in der Umwelt von Tibet, Leipzig, 1955; G. Béguin, Dieux et Démons de l'Himalaya, Paris, 1977 (2x); H. Uhlig, Das Bild des Buddha, Berlin, 1979; A.
Daniélou, Hindu Polytheism, London, 1963; J. Boisselier, La Sculpture en Thaïlande, Fribourg, 1974; R. Le May, A Concise History of Buddhist Art in Siam, Tokyo, 1962; J. Dowson, A Classical Dictionnary of Hindu Mythology, London, 1979.
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