A rare full size Japanese Temple gold gilt ranma. Deep hand-carved relief depicting a floating apsara with an incredible flowing phoenix tail feathers (heavenly being) amongst swirling clouds. A phoenix rising up and through the angel with its head seen leading the way.
An apsara is a female spirit of the clouds and waters in Hindu and Buddhist culture. They figure prominently in the sculpture, dance, literature and painting of many South Asian and Southeast Asian cultures.
The phoenix is a powerful spiritual totem, the ultimate symbol of strength and renewal. As both a fire and solar symbol, the phoenix animal guide is symbolic of the sun, which “dies” in setting each night only to be reborn in rising the next morning.
Black lacquer frame with copper decorative mounts. Gold gilt in great original condition, consistent with age.