Mindscapes a solo exhibition by Rajesh Gurung
Venue: VAST Bhutan
Date/Time: 30th July 14:00 to 15th August 15:00
The Youth Interaction through Art was organized by VAST Bhutan in cooperation with READ Bhutan. The Youth Interaction through Art was designed and conducted by VAST Bhutan from 29th June to the 3rd July 2011 in Ura, Bumthang. The Camp coincided with the school summer break to provide students constructive activity while they are out of class. There were a total of 120 participants creating an environment of a combination of young and old artists alike from both Thimphu and Ura.
Our Art Camp is in line with the goal of positive adolescent and youth development and also with one of our mandates, to interact with youth and provide time, space, and vocational skills through exposure to, interaction with, and participation in learning through Art.
There are many youth issue emerging as Bhutan goes through rapid changes. Some of these issues are directly related to boredom and not having activities that can usefully engage the youth.
VAST Bhutan is an informal Art Club based in Thimphu, managed by a group of young and old artists. Its explicit mission is to guide and assist youth to explore their full potential through exposure and participation in art and at the same time provide an alternative positive use of free time in productive way.
As part of its regular activities, VAST organizes art camp and workshops during summer and winter break for its members and other youth from the area where the camp/workshop is held. The overall aims of these endeavours are to provide opportunities to the young school children to participate and develop their talents through artistic and socially productive activities during their free time.
Reflections by the Group Leaders from Ura
Day One (30 June)
During the morning of the 30th, first we arranged the wood that was scattered behind the house. Then we started our session in which we learned the definition of art. Next we divided ourselves into eight groups by naming our group names and then explaining why we chose the particular name. Then we went outside and made a conceptual sculpture show. Suddenly the famous artists from Thimphu, America, and Thailand came and we welcomed them and they introduced themselves to us.
After lunch we went to our session and the artist from Thailand started teaching us how to draw using basic shapes like trapezoids, circles, and rectangles. Then they gave us each an art book, a pencil, and an art bag. In the art book we started to draw whatever the artist drew. The artist drew a picture of a temple, a mountain, and our village, but the most interesting thing we did was to draw a picture of our teacher Kama. After that the session ended.
Next we prepared for the night programme in which we made a campfire and then we all gathered in a room and started singing. All the friends sang a song and some of the friends also danced and we really enjoyed it. After this we went to sleep and the programme for the 30th June 2011 ends here.
-Ugen Penjan & Dorji Rinchen
Day Two (1 July)
First we did the cleaning and we organized all the papers. After that we had breakfast and a break. Then we went to class where we started to paint while the artist taught us how to paint buildings. We learned a lot and then we had lunch.
After lunch we cleaned up and had free time, then we went to start concentrating on whatever the Thai artist had taught. Then they gave us watercolours, brushes, and other art supplies so we could go outside and paint the valley after learning how to paint mountains and buildings.
-Karma Yeshey Dorji & Thinley Tenzin Norbu
Day Three (2 July)
This morning I woke up and saw the village and the mountains. Some people were washing, some were playing, and some were drawing. Then I went inside to have tea and breakfast. Next, class began and we learned how to draw and paint. We learned how to paint landscapes and houses and how to draw faces with charcoal.
After lunch we went to class to take our sketch bags and went outside to paint. Doing painting we sat in our respective groups and discussed with each other. After sketching we went back to our rooms to leave our sketch bags and we went outside to practice dance for the ending programmes. After that we went to play games.
- Sonam Zangmo Thingh & Tinley Tenzin Norbu
Favorite Parts of the Camp
I enjoyed painting with friends.
-Ngawang Pelzom (11 yrs)
I love to paint.
-Tenzin Namgay (11yrs)
I liked singing with the other boys.
-Thinley Tenzin Norbu (14 yrs)
My favorite lesson was the watercolour lesson.
-Pema Yangzom (13 yrs)
We really liked the lesson about nature with watercolour.
-Tshering Lhaden and Tashi Lhamo (Library Managers/Teachers)
A solo exhibition by Asha Kama in honour of the NATIONAL ORDER OF MERIT (GOLD)
Please come to the opening of “Colour of Prayers” a solo exhibition in honour of National Order of Merit (Gold).
Join us for:
Lunch on 25th June @ 11 AM
Dinner on 26th June @ 6 PM
Venue: VAST Bhutan, Clock Tower Square
I first encountered western art when I was a young boy studying in one of the first exclusive public schools in Thimphu. Leaving my conventional English school I spent several years as an apprentice studying the religious and mythological art of Bhutan at the National Fine Art Centre. After the apprenticeship, I joined the service of the Royal Government as an illustrator/designer for the Development Support Communications Division. I produced a development communication artwork to enhance development programmes of the Royal Government.
In 1991 I won a scholarship from the British Government to study western art at the Kent Institute of Art and Design, Maidstone, University of Kent in England. I graduated with a first class Honours Degree in Communications Media (Design Pathway) in 1994. I continued working for the government and took an early retirement in 1997 to paint and founded VAST Bhutan with two other artists. Till date VAST has tutored and counseled more than 2000 young people ranging from delinquents, high school students to out of school youth.
I have acquired a wide range of experiences in both styles and methods which can be instrumental in combining the rigorous and structured traditional style with more easily flowing/expressive form of contemporary art. This helps me to mature in a direction that I am comfortable with and uniquely my own.
Bhutanese subjects and Buddhist iconography are my main themes with combination of modern and traditional techniques as I have an enduring fascination for textures, movements and many symbols in the Bhutanese culture. I have been exploring this aspect ranging from temple walls to spiritual horses that we see on prayer flags.
As the torch-bearer of Contemporary Art in Bhutan, I am fully engaged in dedicating myself to the issue of Bhutanese contemporary art and helping the youth of Bhutan. With full support and dedication from my students and fellow artists we would like to take Bhutanese art to new heights without compromising our age old traditional art.
Through Layers of Paints
What he shares with the young children today might have been what he wanted for himself way back in the late 1960s. Not so naughty, but naughty all the same, a bit on the impish side! Like all other young boys,he was just another little “Lungtenzampa Lobda” boy, circa mid-1970s, when he found academics too heavy and decided to leave school. In those days, the Manpower Expert’s Office, the precursor to the present RCSC, was literally inundating school drop-outs with offers to join its ranks. But he chose a different path preferring to be an artist. Art, then, was not even listed as an honourable profession.
Art, in Bhutanese tradition, was always anonymous. Creating a work of art then was an act of worship. So it is for Kama too, but it also gave his creative bent of mind the freedom to experiment, which at times verged on irreverence.
The journey from Lhazo ( traditional art ) to contemporary Bhutanese art is not a long one; it is younger than Kama himself. Perhaps, Carolyn Jill Tshering, who introduced him to colours, and Sen Gupta, the art teacher in the erstwhile Thimphu Public School, must have greatly influenced the path Kama took . But the style, strokes and texture are entirely his own, inspired by a muse he alone can identify with.
What does he want to convey? Well, his art is grounded in Buddhism and he wants to share his impressions of Buddhist philosophy through stylized representations as in the Wind Horse, or oblique emphasis on the importance of Speech (gSung) as the Dharma or the Words of Buddha, by prominently displaying the texts ( Lentza Script ).
His art says a lot. One only needs to be slightly discerning. He likes to play with the perspective – juxtapose the far and the near, and the ancient and the modern, and thereby create a fusion that is contemporary Bhutanese art. His art connects him to many people from many different backgrounds. Most of all, it connects him closely with the children, for whom he established VAST, where they explore their artistic vision. This comes from his attachment to his numerous nephews and nieces.
Besides his art and children, he cares for the environment and worries about plastic and other non-biodegradable wastes polluting not only our immediate living space, but also the forests and water systems. All these are visible on his canvas, wherein the man and his life are reflected….. If we can only see through the layers of paints.
K.B.Lama is a Bhutanese media pundit, writer and art critic.
14 artist from Vast participated in the 5th exhibition of new expression of art hosted by dhonburi Rajabhat University in the National Gallery in Bangkok, Thailand.
The New Expression of Asian Art exhibition is a platform for artist to not only exhibit there work but to share, exchange ideas, to learn and to promote Asian art to the rest of the world.In this years exhibition 14 countries and over 100 artist participating in the exhibition.
Artist from Vast got the opportunity to meet and exhibit with masters from all over Asia.
The first class of the year started today on 2nd April 2011.
VAST is joined by 26 enthusiastic young artists all eager to learn. It started off with Asha welcoming all and introducing the senior member artist who will be guiding them over the course of their stay at VAST. Asha gave a brief on what we will be doing over the year, the different classes that will be taught, the different project that we will be doing, the exhibition that we will be organizing and many more fun activity.
After the introduction and briefing by Asha the first class on Drawing and Sketching took place lead by Pema Tshering (tintin)
Enrollment Date (Student members)
19th to 26th March,2011
(should submit artwork with name and address to VAST Studio)
30 New young artists will be enrolled from class VI and above
There will be sunday special classes for children below class VI
In celebration of the 31st birth Anniversary of His Majesty King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuk VAST Bhutan presents 1st solo ceramic show by Maiyesh Tamang.
Date: 21st Feb to 1st March 2011
Time: Opening 3 PM(21st Feb)
Other Days 10 AM onwards
Venue: VAST Studio
Click here to view about Maiyesh
The ceramic art of Maiyesh K Tamang
Bhutanese contemporary artists are counting down the days to take part in the 5th New Expression of Asian Arts exhibition that begins on January 12, 2011 in Bangkok.
To represent the country, 14 senior artists from Voluntary Artists’ Studio Thimphu (VAST) will display a single piece of art of their choice among those from 14 Asian nations. Bhutanese artists will have an opportunity to exhibit their work during the first two days of the two-week exhibition.
The main objective of the exhibition, artist Dorji Wangchuk said, was to provide a platform for Asian artists to demonstrate their creativity, engage in cultural exchange and explore new avenues of expression through interaction.
“Such an exhibition will allow us to meet various masters from other countries and gain new ideas,” Karma Wangchuk said. “That way my art is just an excuse to meet my counterparts from elsewhere.”
Since all artists were allowed only one piece of artwork each for the exhibition, another participating artist Phurba Thinley said he chose his portrait of His Majesty the King. “He’s really a popular figure in Thailand,” he said. “That way I’ll be able to represent the country better.”
Dorji Wangchuk said most of their artworks were contemporary types. The exhibition will be held at the National Art Gallery in Phranakorn, Bangkok.
(Original story by KUENSEL)
On this most auspicious day – the National Day, His Majesty the King awarded Asha Kama The National Order Of Merit Gold Medal.
On this national event held at the Changlimithang Stadium, attended by thousands of people, and telecast live throughout the country, His Majesty called Asha Kama to the dais and outlined Asha’s tireless voluntary efforts in working with the youth of Bhutan.
In the evening, in true VAST spirit, everybody gathered in the studio to celebrate this very prestigious honour.
We are very proud of you Asha, and we are happy beyond words. And as Asha mentioned at the dinner, if we conduct ourselves as His Majesty had mentioned in his address to the nation – committed and with compassion, in harmony with our society – VAST members would be winning medals every year.
Congratulations Asha. You have our full support in whatever you do, and we pray for many more honors for you.