Case Study

| Published: February 10, 2020

Thangka painting through the eyes of a Thangka painter: a case study

Amullya Rai

Montfort College of Psychology, Bangalore University, Darjeeling, West Bengal, India Google Scholar More about the auther

DIP: 18.01.006/20200801

DOI: 10.25215/0801.006


Thangkas are intricate paintings of Buddha, Buddhist deities or mandalas that have existed as an art form since ancient times in Tibetan Buddhism. This study follows the research paradigm of case study to understand the role and significance of Thangka paintingas perceived by Thangka painters of Darjeeling, India. There were 2 male participants in this study. Both of the participants practiced Buddhism and had 30-40 years of Thangka painting experience. They had learnt the art from masters of the craft themselves. Looking at the life history of the artists, it was revealed that a calm temperament was impertinent when making a Thangka. Religious knowledge and a feeling of goodwill was also found to be necessary to make a Thangka. It was revealed that Thangka painting was a therapeutic process for the artists as they found peace when working on their craft. They also reported being less aggressive and being happier in their lives because of the art. There was also a need to maintain high levels of patience and concentration when making a Thangka that promoted the feeling of calmness in the artists.

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ISSN 2348-5396

ISSN 2349-3429



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Published in   Volume 08, Issue 1, January-March, 2020