This rare painting depicts a high placed pontiff of the Tibetan Yellow Cap or dGe.lugs.pa order. The folded hat, normally associated with portraits of the Panchen Lama, suggests this. Unfortunately the painting does not bear an inscription providing his name. The individual facial portrait style is executed in a certain realistic western manner and can be compared favourably to the very small known group of painted representations of Rol.pa’i.rdo.rje (1717 – 1786), the ‘Teacher of the Empire’ under emperor Qianlong (1736 – 1796). Most examples however show the lama with an elderly face. Just one painting of the group and inscribed with his name, presently in the Ethnographic Museum of Berlin (published in ‘Chinese Imperial Patronage: Treasures from Temples and Palaces’, vol. II, by Asian Art Gallery, London, page 103, fig.5) illustrates a comparable younger Rol.pa’i.rdo.rje. Still on all portrait paintings his moustache and the more or less distinctively drawn ‘goatee’ below his lower lip can identify the lama. The Berlin painting illustrates as well, as only one, the same attributes and folded textile hat. Therefore it is not to be excluded that the presented lama represents the second Chankya Hutuktu.
The style of this painting and the Berlin example are slightly different to the small group of known examples depicting the elderly second Hutuktu. The latter group seems to be more mannered, stylized and densely executed than both paintings depicting the younger lama. Therefore it is proposed to date this painting as well slightly earlier, most probably in the second quarter of the eighteenth century.