Thangka is a form ofBuddhist art which is painted upon cotton or silk clothing usually depicting a Buddhsit deity in a scene or a mandala. The thangkais not a flat painting like any other oil or acrylic painting but consists of a panel which is painted on a mounted texted which is later laid over by a cover made of silk or leather. The thangkas are painted so as to last for a long time and they do retain much of the intricate details in them for a long period of time which is possible after storing them in a dry place and out of reach of moisture which will reduce the quality of silk. Thesethangkas are painted and tailored with varied intents, trainings and skills by various painters and tailors. The style, form and mountings of the thangkas vary according to the region of origins and the meaning behind each of them are expressed in complicated fashion so as to let others know and teach easily about the meaning behind the story in the Thangka.
The literal translation of the Tibetan word Thang Ka is "a recorded message that can be rolled". The Tibetan monks and lamas who travelled along the region of Tibet used these paintings to teach and spread the stories and principles related to Buddhism. They used thangkas for they could be rolled, unrolled and transported with an ease so as to suit the needs of many nomadicTibetan clans. These ancient paintings are painted with a special meaning of communicating and spreading the message to a practitioner and help them lead themselves towards the path ofBuddhism. Thangkas have also been a great medium for meditation enthusiast as they are the visual representation of many deities. They are also used in many festivals and ceremonies by many Buddhist monasteries and temples for the locals and followers of Buddhism to view and worship.
Another deep meaning that thangkas hold is that they are the expression of the fully awakened form of enlightenment and as the enlightenment is the ultimate goal of the spiritual Buddhism, the thangka paintings hold a very important role in Buddhist followers and monks. That is why the Thangkas are called as the roadmap towards enlightenment. The intricate details regarding the exact proportions and measurements required to portray each deity is required to paint thethangka. These proportions were established by the Buddhist artistic as well as iconographic practices that have been going on for centuries and centuries.
Thangka Paintings in our gallery
The thangkas in our online Buddhist art gallery are usually old and antique ones from Tibetand Nepal. Unlike the ones that are for sale in many tourist shops, our antique thangkas are specially imported from various Nepali and Tibetan Buddhist monasteries and temples who want to part away with their Buddhist art. You can be rest assured about the authenticity of the antique thangkas in our online thangka gallery.