Pencil waterbase stone color, Gold on canvas
25 x 36 cm
Collection of Prakash Ratna Tuladhar
Tārā is widely recognized as one of the most highly regarded deities in the realm of traditional art. The compassionate figure known as Ārya Tārā sometimes referred to as Green Tārā, is believed to dwell with the purpose of emancipating sentient beings across the six realms, alleviating them from various forms of affliction and distress. Ārya Tārā is a prominent deity within the Vajrayāna Buddhist tradition, revered for her role in facilitating the attainment of mokśa, or spiritual liberation, through the practice of sādhanā. The deity in question consistently assumes a feminine manifestation, being widely recognized as a bodhisattva and maternal figure for all sentient beings. Ārya Tārā, similar to Avalokiteśvara, exhibits attributes of empathy, as she is believed to have sprung from the tears shed by Avalokiteśvara upon witnessing the suffering, hardship, and anguish experienced by sentient beings.
Ārya Tārā is commonly recognized as the consort of Amoghasiddhi, one of the five Dhyāni Buddhas. The Amoghasiddhi Buddha is representative of the air element, which is one of the fundamental constituents of the cosmos alongside the other four elements. In the painting, Amoghasiddhi Buddha can be seen at the top of the central deity. The color green is symbolically associated with the element Air, which is also attributed to Tārā due to her distinctive green hue.
Green Tārā is renowned for her rapid and benevolent nature. The typical portrayal of this figure is often represented as youthful, with a green complexion that serves as a representation of dynamic compassion and the capacity to promptly address the requirements of sentient individuals. Frequently depicted with an extended leg, poised to ascend and provide assistance to individuals requiring aid. In Shrestha’s painting, the artist is depicted assuming the Abhaṅga Mudrā posture. The right hand of the deity is depicted grasping a crimson utpala (lotus) leaf, while the left hand grips the stem of a blue utpala flower, symbolizing notions of purity and enlightenment.