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Thangka is a jewel of Tibetan culture, but a new generation is looking at the ancient treasure with youthful vision. Today, we'll meet one of the young people who wants to take the Thangka legacy to a wider audience.
Lunzhu Danta is studying Tibetan traditional arts and crafts design in Tibet University. For the past three years at college, every day, he spends four hours learning to paint his treasured legacy, Thangka. The young man is determined to be a guardian of the traditional art.
Lunzhu Dan, Junior student of Tibet University, said, "My teacher told me that conditions were very hard when they learned Thangka painting from their teacher. But now, the situation has improved a lot. We are able to learn it at college. Today, Tangka is more widely known and is better preserved. I believe the future is better and brighter."
With a history of over one-thousand years, Thangka is honored as an mini-encyclopedia of Tibet. The content not only depicts religious themes, but also everyday Tibetan life.
Thangka became popular among traveling monks because the scroll paintings were easily rolled and transported between monasteries. Even at a glance, you can see that the elaborate art is time-consuming... whether it's made by gem stone powder, embroidered, or presented on cloth or wood.
Along with a strong effort to preserve the traditional art, the government is also promoting it through tailored events like the first Thangka Art Expo, which opened earlier this year. Plans are to hold the expo every year, carrying a new ambition to share the Tibetan legacy with more art lovers around the world.
- Thangka art on display in Lhasa 2010-08-04
- Devout pilgrims worship huge Buddha thangka in Tibet 2010-07-27
- Tibetan Thangka displayed in Shanghai 2010-06-25