Ex­hi­bi­tion a dream come true for Ti­betan artist Dronkar Kyi

China Daily (Canada) - - TIBET - By PALDEN NYIMA and DAQIONG in Lhasa

A dream 12 years in the mak­ing has fi­nally come true for Dronkar Kyi, who hosted an ex­hi­bi­tion of her art­work in Lhasa, cap­i­tal of the Tibet au­ton­o­mous re­gion, last month.

Born on the grass­lands of Gan­nan Ti­betan au­ton­o­mous pre­fec­ture in Gansu prov­ince, the 24-year-old made a pil­grim­age to Lhasa half a life­time ago, where she was in­spired by the oil paint­ings she saw on the wall of a Ti­betan cafe.

She honed her skills with col­ored pen­cils and worked as an art teacher in her home­town un­til the op­por­tu­nity arose for her to dis­play her own art­works in the Ti­betan cap­i­tal this sum­mer.

“I lost my soul in Lhasa 12 years ago, I have been seek­ing it ever since, and now I think I have found it again,” she said, de­scrib­ing the city as her “in­spi­ra­tion”.

Dronkar Kyi’s ex­hi­bi­tion, ti­tled Home­town, was a five-day solo show fea­tur­ing a se­ries of 40 post­cards and two other art­works. It was the first she had hosted.

Hid­den away in an al­ley in the north­ern part of the city, the ex­hi­bi­tion’s lo­ca­tion was not easy to find, but it drew many vis­i­tors.

It took her two years to com­plete the works on show, and she be­gan pre­par­ing for the ex­hi­bi­tion about 12 months ago.

She drew on the grass­lands, no­mads, monas­ter­ies, and yak tents of her home­land for her art.

“I chose to use grass­land el­e­ments, be­cause the grass­land is where I was born, and cul­tural el­e­ments such as Ti­betan robes and yak tents are the things I fa­mil­iar with,” she said.

An­other of her de­sires was to cap­ture the pass­ing of time and “to record new changes on the grass­land such as some Ti­betan women wear­ing scarves and masks which Ti­betan women did not wear decades ago”, Dronkar Kyi said.

“Ti­betan paint­ings usu­ally re­mind peo­ple of thangka paint­ings, but fewer peo­ple know about col­ored-pen­cil paint­ings, and this is the prob­a­bly why my work has drawn at­ten­tion,” Dronkar Kyi said.

“I want to im­prove my skills now by be­ing an ap­pren­tice with oth­ers and I hope I can hold more ex­hi­bi­tions in the fu­ture.”

“Con­grat­u­la­tions to Dronkar Kyi on host­ing her first art ex­hi­bi­tion in Lhasa, her post­cards have a strong eth­nic fla­vor,” said Pema Lhadron, a Ti­betan writer who added that the art­works had im­mor­tal­ized “the love and the joy of grass­land life”.

Sangye Don­drup, a Ti­betan doc­tor at Machu County Peo­ple’s Hos­pi­tal in Gansu prov­ince, de­scribed Dronkar Kyi as hon­est and hard work­ing.

“Our hos­pi­tal plans to have some of Dronkar Ky’s paint­ings on the walls in the near fu­ture, which we ex­pect to help pa­tients feel bet­ter and make them feel happy.”

Con­tact the writ­ers at palden_ nyima@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Dronkar Kyi ex­plains one of her art­work to a vis­i­tor in Lhasa, Tibet au­ton­o­mous re­gion dur­ing her ex­hi­bi­tion.

No­mad liv­ing on the grass­lands is one of Dronkar Kyi’s fa­vorite sub­jects.

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