Towards the last two months of my last visit to India in the spring of 2012, I encountered the Tibetan community in exile in India experiencing painful news of their people self-immolating in fire one after another in China-occupied Tibet. My experiences in the past visits in India (drawing a cremation site in Varanasi, documenting fire pits, cremation alters, and contemplating on life and death around fire) synchronized with this particular movement, an extreme way of ‘offering’ their bodies to ‘fire’ for asking freedom and peace.I could not help drawing large and small drawings as emotional response and with a sense of mourning.

After coming back to Vancouver, the self-immolation kept happening and I felt that my personal and professional task is not finished.

I have come back to India to continue to document and draw under the same theme.

24 April 2013

For Konchok Woeser and Lobsang Dawa

For Konchok Woeser 20 yr old and Lobsang Dawa 22 yrs old.

Both are monks from Taktsang Lhamo Kirti Monastery. They self-immolated together beside the main prayer hall on April 24, 2013 in Zoege, Amdo, Tibet.

In the picture arrived in the Tibetan-in-exile community, snow could be seen on the logs and stones around their burning site.

On such a cold day you passed away, surrounded by
other monks.

I dream a country where no more of you have to pass like this.