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.

29 January 2019

Remember Lobsang Tsultrim March 19 2012

For Lobsang Tsultrim, 20 years old monk from Kirti Monastery, who self immolated in Ngaba, Amdo, Tibet on March 19 2012.

According to the Kirti monks in exile, he marched down the main road of the country town and shouting slogans and as he walked on from the site of his self immolation, armed police personnel came running to interrupt him.  He turned and ran back in the other direction, continuing to shout.
He was then knocked to the ground and held by police officers.
Despite, he kept raising his arms and shouting slogans.

Lobsang passed away in custody and only a portion of his ashes was returned to his family.

He was a relative of Norbu Damdrul, a former Kirti monk who died after self immolating on October 15 2011 and became the 13th current or former monk from Kirti Monastery to carry out the protest.

13 January 2019

Love - Life / India - Tibet - Gwangju

It started in India, longing for Tibetan Plateau through the Himalayan mountains and Indus river.

One human's humble drawings made from her heart-wrenching reactions since 2012 have travelled afar since.

Through threads of many hands and empathetic hearts of 
then-unknown-now-close friends.
In same way,  drawings reached Gwangju, Korea in 2018.

A place that  witnessed an unforgettable moment of students and civilians arising 
for democratic freedom in 1980.

A seed in my heart was planted there during the first visit and now it has rooted, growing like a tree.

The monumental pagoda tree* and Jeonil building* in Gwangju, Korea
both are witnesses of Gwangju Uprising.

Love Life - Live 

* The pagoda tree was blown to ground by typhoon in August 2012, however, it is still remembered as a symbol of the protest by many civilians. 
*Jeonil Building has 170 bullet marks left from the military helicopter attack to civilians in May 1980 ( Information given by Myoung Jin Choi, Director of AHHA Gallery, Gwangju, Korea)

Tashi Delek 2019

この世界の片隅まで 光がそそぎますように。
May light permeate to the every dark corner of the world.