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.

13 February 2014

For Dorjee

For Dorjee, who self immolated in the city of Ngaba, Amdo, Tibet in the evening on February 13 2014.

News with minimum information says security forces arrived right away, probably like black clouds.

"Do not surround him burning on the ground
Do not offer prayers at a monastery
Do not visit his family for condolence
Do not carry his body "

People have no right how to feel in their hearts and how to act with their feelings.

Those in black uniforms are stamping on a dead person and people's hearts.

5 February 2014

For Phagmo Samdrub

For Phagmo Samdrub, 27 yrs old and father of two children, who set himself ablaze in Dokarmo town, Tsekhog County, Malho,  Eastern Tibet on February 5 2014.

Chinese forces have tightened up the security and means of communications from outside have been shut down.

Like many other, you soaked your body in oil and offered yourself as a lamp to wish for peace and freedom in your country and for your people.

When will the time come when your sacrifice see that moment?