Skeleton costume

Skeleton Dance Costume, late 19th or early 20th century
Silk, flannel; Overall: 70 × 60 in. (177.8 × 152.4 cm)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Mrs. Edward A. Nis, 1934 (34.80.3a–h)


Apron plaque with dancing female

19th century, Tibet, ritual apron plaque with goddess, bone, private collection.

This dancing female does the fear-allaying gesture with her left hand curiously bent at a right angle.

Toad flasks

Undated, Eastern Tibet, Toad flask, bronze (copper alloy), private collection, photo by Astamangala.

This is a particularly well-preserved and decorative example of a series of flasks shaped like a toad, with the corresponding granulated-skin effect. These were probably used by pilgrims of a certain social status to carry water on their journey.

Circa 18th century, Tibet, brass with leather straps, at the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena (USA).

Circa 18th century, Tibet, brass with leather strap and wooden stopper, private collection, photo by Michael Backman Ltd.


Ornate tea cups

19th century, Tibet, iron inlaid with silver and gold, private collection,

This tea cup and its lotus-shaped holder are richly decorated with a floral and foliate pattern. The lid has a turquoise finial. This type of tea set is known as dhakya.

Same, silver alloy and jade, private collection.

The lid on this one is richly embossed with dragons on a foliate background, topped with a lotus flower and a jade finial. The stand is missing.

Antique head ornaments

Woman’s head ornament, Tibet, silver, turquoise, coral, brass, private collection, photo by Lempertz.

Tibetan women traditionally wore in their headdress a round silver ornament inlaid with turquoise and coral and decorated with an embossed pattern (or several). It is unusual for this object to be decorated with skulls.

Same as before, without brass.