Published: Aug. 16, 2015

A review of the numberous Tibetan and Himalayan Studies events at CU Boulder in the past decade, including art exhibits, guest lectures, conferences, film screenings and more.

Waves on the Turquoise Lake: Contemporary Expressions of Tibetan Art
Exhibit at the CU Art Museum, September 14 - October 20, 2006

"Waves on the Turquoise Lake: Contemporary Expressions of Tibetan Art" was a landmark exhibit, the first to bring together contemporary art by Tibetans working inside and outside of Tibet. The exhibit was hosted by the CU Art Museum in conjunction with the Mechak Center for Contemporary Tibetan Art and organized by Lisa Tamiris Becker, Losang Gyatso, Carole McGranahan, and Tamar Victoria Scoggin.

Politics of Protests in Tibet and Beyond
Panel for the Association of Asian Studies, Western Conference, September 12-14, 2008

Panel on “Politics of Protest in Tibet and Beyond” for Western Conference of the Association of Asian Studies (AAS), held at the CU Boulder campus, September 12-14, 2008. Organized by Emily Yeh of CU Boulder and Ralph LItzinger of Duke University and chaired by Emily Yeh.

Tibetan Film Festival, November 6-14, 2009
Film festival organized by Anthropology students of Carole McGranahan

Research on Contemporary Tibet: New Challenges, New Methods
Conference at CU Boulder on February 26, 2010

This conference drew a dozen leading scholars in the field together on campus for discussions of research-in-progress and two public events: a roundtable on current research challenges—open to faulty and graduate students in Asian Studies—and a panel on "What's Happened in Tibet since the 2008 Protests?" open to the general public. The conference was hosted by Emily Yeh, Carole McGranahan, and Holly Gayley and sponsored by the Center for Asian Studies and the Graduate Committee on the Arts and Humanities.

What's Happened in Tibet since the 2008 Protests?
Public Panel on February 26, 2010

The public panel offered an illuminating discussion of the events surrounding the dramatic protests that swept across the Tibetan plateau in March 2008. Panelists Robbie Barnett, Charlene Makley, Geoff Childs, and Emily Yeh shared their compelling first-hand experiences in the field that year. Part of "Research on Contemporary Tibet: New Challenges, New Methods" conference.

Boulder Premier of "The Search" on April 9, 2010
Film premier followed by Q&A with filmmaker Pema Tseden

Acclaimed Tibetan filmmaker Pema Tseden visited the University of Colorado on April 9 for a public screening of his new film, The Search, followed by a Q&A session with the filmmaker. Organized by Emily Yeh and sponsored by the Center for Asian Studies.

Why Amdo Matters: TIbetan Middle Ground between Lhasa and Beijing
Public Lecture by Gray Tuttle on November 4, 2010

Author of Tibetan Buddhists in the Making of Modern China (2005) and the Leila Hadley Luce Assistant Professor of Modern Tibetan Studies at Columbia University, Gray Tuttle discussed the ways in which the region of Amdo served as a middle ground between Lhasa and Beijing during the Qing dynasty and Republican era. His current research examines the support that Tibetan Buddhist institutions have received from the governments of China from the 17th to 20th century and how this support, along with economic growth in the Sino-Tibetan borderlands, has fueled expansion and renewal of these institutions into the contemporary period. This event was part of the Center for Humanities & the Arts Lecture Series in conjunction with its China Seminar for the 2010-2011 academic year in which Emily Yeh and Holly Gayley were both participants.

Tibetan Studies Luncheon & Colloquium
Colloquium with Professor Padmatsho on August 25, 2011

Luncheon with Professor Padmatsho from Southwest Nationalities University in Chengdu to discuss her recent research and how to do field research in Tibetan areas. Professor Padmatsho is one of the first Tibetan women to receive a Ph.D. in Buddhist Studies in China, and her research spans from rituals and sacred dances dedicated to the Indian tantric adept Padmasambhava to new educational opportunities for contemporary Tibetan Buddhist women. Organized by Holly Gayley and sponsored by the Department of Religious Studies.

Translating Buddhist Luminaries: A Conference on Ecumenism and Tibetan Translation
Conference at CU Boulder on April 18–20, 2013

This conference explored translation issues in relation to texts of advice by nineteenth-century ecumenical masters clustered in eastern Tibet. "Translating Buddhist Luminaries" convened a group of fifteen scholars and translators to discuss translations-in-progress and included two public components: a panel on "Ecumenism in Tibet" and a discussion on "The Art of Translation" for Tibetan Studies faculty and graduate students. Organized by Holly Gayley of CU Boulder and Josh Schapiro of Fordham University and co-sponsored by the Tsadra Foundation and the Center for Asian Studies with additional support from the Center for Humanities & the Arts.

Ecumenism in Tibet
Public Panel with Ringu Tulku & Visiting Scholars on April 18, 2013

This public panel discussed the ecumenical impulse in nineteenth-century Tibet of a famed circle of Buddhist luminaries, who collected and compiled a wide range of teachings in order to preserve Tibet's diverse practice traditions and unique tantric heritage. The panel featured keynote speaker Ringu Tulku;  panelists Sarah Harding of Naropa University, Michael Sheehy of Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center, and Douglas Duckworth of East Tennessee State University; and moderator Holly Gayley of CU Boulder. Part of the "Translating Buddhist Luminaries" conference.

Visions and Prophecies in Tibetan Buddhism
Public Lecture by Khenpo Sodargye on April 23, 2013

In this lecture, Khenpo Sodargye of Larung Buddhist Academy shared his knowledge about the Tibetan practice of revealing "treasures" or terma, what this practice signifies, how treasures are revealed, and what kinds of dreams, visions and prophecies emerge in the mind-stream of a "treasure revealer." Organized by Emily Yeh and sponsored by the Center for Asian Studies.

Ways of Knowing the Body in Buddhist Tantra and Tibetan Medicine
Public Lecture by Janet Gyatso on October 17, 2013

Janet Gyatso, the Hershey Professor of Buddhist Studies at Harvard University and a leading voice in the field of Tibetan Studies, discussed the ways that traditional Tibetan medicine sometimes found its Buddhist heritage and its urge for empirical knowledge of the body to be at odds and made unusual efforts to separate itself from religious ways of knowing. Her lecture explored how the body became the focus of some of the most interesting theoretical reflection, from the dawn of Tibetan Buddhism into the time of the height of the central Tibetan government's powers in the 17th century. This was the inaugural lecture in the Chögyam Trungpa Lecture Series in Buddhist Studies. Organized by Holly Gayley and sponsored by the Center for Asian Studies in collaboration with Naropa University.

The Making of Milarepa: Reading and Writing the Life of Tibet’s Greatest Saint
Public Lecture by Andrew Quintman on October 1, 2014

In this lecture, Andrew Quintman explored the biographical corpus of Tibet's great saint, Milarepa, and its compilation into a masterful piece of world literature by Tsangnyön Heruka in the fifteenth century. Based on his book, The Yogin and the Madman: Reading the Biographical Corpus of Tibet's Great Saint Milarepa (2013), he presented the evolution of this biographical corpus from its early skeletal fragments to the novelistic fifteenth-century work that reanimated the saint's life. Organized by Holly Gayley and sponsored by the Center for Asian Studies.

Pecha Series by the Lhasa Artist Gade
Reception and Exhibit Opening at CU Art Museum on October 1, 2014

This reception and exhibit of works by the Lhasa artist Gade from his series on "pechas," paintings done on traditional manuscript paper. Loaned by CU faculty, the works on exhibit juxtapose Buddhist motifs with icons of modernity, such as Ronald McDonald and Communist soldiers, to highlight tensions between tradition and modernity in contemporary Tibet. In doing so, Gade comments on the commodification of the Buddha image, the ubiquity of Western consumer goods, and the inescapable presence of the Chinese Communist government. Organized by Ariana Maki in conjuction with library exhibit, "Opening the Tibetan Treasury of Knowledge: Textual Transmission and Cultural Preservation."

Opening the Tibetan Treasury of Knowledge: Textual Transmission and Cultural Preservation
Installation at Norlin Library designed by Andrew Violent, October 2014 to present

"Opening the Tibetan Treasury of Knowledge: Textual Transmission and Cultural Preservation" is an intallation designed by Andrew Violet and located on the third floor of Norlin Library across from Special Collections. The installation explores the production of Tibetan texts from woodblock printing to digitization. The Treasury of Knowledge, composed by the nineteenth-century Buddhist luminary Jamgön Kongtrul, provided the lens through which to view the transformation of Tibetan texts and their transmission to the West through massive translation projects. This event celebrated and served as a prequel to the Tsadra "Translation and Transmission" Conference in Keystone, CO on October 2-5th. Organized by Holly Gayley, Ariana Maki, Andrew Violet and Megan Welsh and sponsored by the Center for Asian Studies in tandem with the CU Art Museum, the CU Libraries, and the Department of Religious Studies.

Anonymous: Contemporary Tibetan Art
Exhibit at CU Art Museum, February 14 - May 9, 2015

"Anonymous" is a collection of contemporary Tibetan art that "explores the tension between an ancient culture’s unbroken artistic tradition and the personality-driven world of contemporary art." This show, curated by Rachel Weingeist, has been traveling for the last few years and has generated much interest and acclaim. Due to the sizable Himalayan community living in and around Boulder, as well as Naropa, and general community interest, Anonymous was a hugely successful show. Organized by Ariana Maki with support from the Rubin Foundation.

Tsherin Sherpa: A Week at CU Boulder as Visiting Artist
Visitng Artist and Guest Lecture on February 24, 2015

In late February, Tibetan artist Tsherin Sherpa spent a week at CU Boulder, engaging students and community members alike with his experiences as an artist in one of the newest fields of Asian art history, contemporary Himalayan art. Tsherin’s work directly engages with how traditions are changed and transformed through media: how do ‘outsiders’ impact the creation of Tibetan art, both traditional and contemporary? What about the expectations of viewers who come from inside Himalayan cultures? How will Tibetan culture engage with the political and social realities of the modern world? Organized by Ariana Maki and sponsored by the Center for Asian Studies as part of its Mediating Asia series.

Liberating Yaks: The Vegetarian Question in Tibet
Public Lecture by Khenpo Tsultrim Lodrö on April 28, 2015

In his lecture, Khenpo Tsultrim Lodrö, a renowned cleric-scholar from Larung Buddhist Academy in eastern Tibet, spoke about vegetarianism and the compassionate treatment of animals. A Buddhist scholar of high regard, he is a prolific author and speaker on Buddhist ethics, a passionate advocate for animal welfare, and an important voice of Buddhist modernism in Tibet. This is the Khenpo's first visit to the US on a tour of a handful of major universities, including Harvard, University of Virginia, George Washington University, and Columbia. Organized by Professor Padmatso, Emily Yeh and Holly Gayley with support from the Center for Asian Studies, Dean’s Office for Arts & Humanities, and Center for Humanities and the Arts.

Buddhist Ethics & Environmentalism: Confluences, Tensions
Graduate Colloquium and Panel with Khenpo Tsultrim Lodrö on April 29, 2015

Intended primarily for graduate students, this event involved a lively dialogue between Khenpo Tsultrim Lodrö and a panel of researchers on questions of ethics, religion and the environment. Moderated by Holly Gayley, the discussants included Emily Yeh, a professor in the Department of Geography at CU Boulder; Julia Klein, an ecosystem ecologist who works on the Tibetan Plateau at Colorado State University; Thomas Andrews, professor of environmental history at CU Boulder; and Marian Hourdequin, professor of environmental ethics at Colorado College. Organized by Professor Padmatso, Emily Yeh and Holly Gayley with support from the Center for Asian Studies, Dean’s Office for Arts & Humanities, and Center for Humanities and the Arts.