Tibetan arts originated from the rock paintings in ancient time and its contents ranged from animal images of deer, ox, sheep, horse, etc to hunting scenes. Tibetan arts have developed very well during the period of Tubo Kingdom. Especially after introducing Buddhism to Tibet, religious paintings made a further progress. The heritage of traditional Tibetan crafts and the fusion of India, Nepal and Han People’s art essence make Tibetan arts outstand in the world. Tourists can get a panorama view of Tibet arts through stone and rock carvings, murals, frescos, sand mandala and precious Thangkas.
A Tibetan artist is absorbed in making Thangka.
As a kind of folk art, Tibetan carving is Tibetan culture in miniature. It records the past days of Tibetan area and people's life. The contents in stone and rock carvings have covered Tibetan daily necessities, fairy gods, Bon religion, folk legend, historical figures and Tibetan Buddhism, etc. Three typical representatives of Tibetan rock carvings are really worth your visit, namely, Ritu Rock Carving in Ngari, Yaowangshan Rock Carving in Lhasa and Zaxi Cave Rock Carving in Nagqu.
Tibetan murals and frescos are the actual pictures of Tibetan history, from which you can find the trace of Tibetan politics, economy, culture, customs and medicine. And it also has abundant subjects, including Buddhist teachings, fairy tales, local lives, natural scenery, etc. The best place to appreciate Tibetan murals are Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, and Ruins of Guge Kingdom.
Different from oil painting and frescos, Tibetan Thangkas are often painted on cloth, silk, brocade and paper. Most of them focus on Tibetan religions, depicting the life of Buddha and historical stories of important Lamas. While joining Buddha Exhibition Festival in Tashilhunpo Monastery, you’ll recognize how important Thangka it is to local Tibetans.