Tibetan Buddhist art


 

According to legends, Buddhism was introduced to Tibet in the 7th century, and then artistic influences came both from Nepal and China. In the era of the Tibetan empire between the 7th and the 9th century, artists from the Buddhist Tarim basin also worked in the central Tibet. The first phase of Buddhism in Tibet ended in the mid 9th century with the persecution of Buddhist and the break-up of the Tibetan empire. The kingdom of Guge introduced a Buddhist revival in the West of the country by inviting teachers and artists from Kashmir. From the 11th century on, numerous monasteries were founded and teachers such as Marpa and Milarepa brought important new impetus.
Because Tibetan Buddhism was taken on by the Mongolians in the 13th and again in the 16th century, and was supported by the Manchu emperors in Beijing, it became one of the dominant spiritual and artistic forces in the entire central Asia region and has maintained this function in spite of the persecutions in the 20th century. See the permanent exhibition at the Staatliches Museum für Völkerkunde München.

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