Published: Sept. 17, 2016

Karma Phuntsok's talk, Unexpected Buddha on September 1, was a rare glimpse into the memories, compassion, and histories of the intricately talented ‘contemporary Tibetan Thankga painter’. Here is an aching excerpt from Karma Phuntsok's talk: “My painting helps me process my anger. I think over what HHDL said, to have compassion. Mao helps me process my anger. To imagine having compassion, even for Mao. How do you love someone who has brought destruction to your world?”

Karma Phutsok with CU Boulder Professor Carole McGranahan and graduate students 

(From L-R: Rupak Shrestha, Marielle Butters, Dawa Lokyitsang, Karma Phuntsok, Carole McGranahan, Drew Zackary)

More on Karma’s work:

In her introduction to Karma Phuntsok's talk, CU Professor Carole McGranahan spoke about an article she wrote on Tibetan history - a story about Mao in Tibet on the Long March. She said that she was confused by the story for a long time. Karma's paintings finally helped her understand the story and Tibetan possibilities for understanding Mao. The article with some of the artwork Karma discussed in the talk can be accessed here:

A live recorded video from the talk can be accessed here: