The Norbulingka Institute in Dharmshala is indeed a ‘treasure garden’ for Tibetan Crafts

Employing over 300 artisans, conducting  workshop in various Himalayan arts, the  institute in Dharamshala also provides artisans of Tibetan refugee community the means to earn their keep apart from preserving a timeless cultural heritage. 

Nestled in Dhauladhar mountains, in the vicinity of Kangra tea garden the Institute was set up by Kelsang Yeshi, Minister of the Department of Religion and Culture, and his wife Kim Yeshi who wished to create a haven for Tibetan arts and culture. 

The institute was named after the Dalai Lama’s summer palace in Lhasa. At present they endow artists and craftspeople with ancestral knowledge, providing jobs to a community of over 300 Tibetans under the guidance of talented masters who work towards preserving Tibetan arts and culture, keeping them fresh, contemporary, and relevant.

Norbulingka Institute is a paradise for a seeker with a vein of curiosity as the institute offers workshops to the patrons staying in their guesthouse.

Preserving their traditional skills and ancestral knowledge, artisans from Tibetan community practice and impart the lessons in various arts and crafts like thangka painting, statue making, thangka applique, woodcarving, applique, wood painting, tailoring, weaving, and screen printing. 

Being living testament to cultural heritage and an economic resource for Tibetan refugees, artists at Norbulingka have also revived a traditional Tibetan method of relief painting called kyumbur.

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