Saturday, April 16, 2005

Giant Pieced "Appliques" in Tibet (thangkas)

In Tibet, giant pieced, spiritual pieces called gochen thangkas are created out of antique silks and brocades that are displayed by monasteries for worship. Imagine an art quilt covering an entire hillside and that's how large they are. I mean, huge! They have backing fabric, borders and a special protective layer that is pulled away before they are shown for 4 hours on special days of the Tibetan year. One thangka can use as much as 1500 m (about 1600 yards)! They also have a special leather bag and it can take 70 monks to take it to the hillside. This site has great photos from the process of reconstructing two whose originals were destroyed during the cultural revolution. These are incredible.


Sonji Hunt said...

The info on these websites was so interesting. They are HUGE. Wow, what an undertaking. I'd love to see that in person some day.

Elle said...

Aren't they amazing?!