Thanka Painting Courses

Trainings and advanced courses in traditional Tibetan thanka painting were held in Pugmo by the local Master Yungdrung Yise in Pugmo as well as in Kathmandu.

Thankas are religious scroll paintings which are predominantly used for meditation and rituals or decorate monasteries (gompas), shrines (shorten) and house chapels. They usually depict deities, religious masters, protectors and their entourage. The art of thanka painting has a long tradition and is strongly connected with religious texts which describe the respective deities, their entourage and their typical manifestations in detail and tell about their powers and deeds. In Dolpo two thanka painters have mastery over this artisan craft, one of them is the old Yungdrung Yise Lama, also called Yungyel, whose brush strokes refined most of the wall paintings of the Bon monasteries in Dolpo. 
In winter 1999 Yungdrung Yise held the first thanka painting course in Phoksumdo. Eight youth, among them for the first time a woman, participated. Since then the Tapriza NGO in corporation with the NGO 'Friends of Dolpa' supported the course for several winters. We provided colours, material, books and a teachers salary.
The graduates of the thanka course from their part donated to the community by contributing to the renovation of the wall paintings in shrines (chorten) and monstaries (gompas). They also showed their newly acquired skills by painting the new reredos in the Ringmo monastery. Because the eye sight of our master is continuously getting worse, we need to look for a new opportunity to continue teaching the local artisan craft. For this we financed an advanced training in Kathmandu for some of the talented youth. In the winter 2006 we implemented this plan for the first time: Yeshi Sangmo, the best graduate of the thanka painting course, continued her training in Kathmandu.  

Our thanka course graduates during the renovation of the main shrine in Ringmo:

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