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.

20 May 2017

For Jamyang Losal May 19 2017

For Jamyang Losal, aged about 22,  who self immolated on May 19 2017 in Kangtsa county,
Amdo, Tibet.

He set himself on fire around 5 a.m. near the People's Hospital and passed away.   His body was taken away by the police, and when his family members went to the police station to claim his remains,  the police refused to comply with their request.

Losal was a monk belonging to Gyeteng Monastery in Kangtsa's Nangra town, where 20 monks reside and study.