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The Black Hat Eccentric

Artistic Visions of the Tenth Karmapa

August 31, 2012–February 11, 2013

The Tenth Karmapa Choying Dorje (1604-1674) was not only leader of the Karma Kagyu School of Tibetan Buddhism but also famous as a great artistic innovator. In particular his works are characterized by playful depictions of animals, which set him apart from other Tibetan artists. The Tenth Karmapa will be the first exhibition anywhere about this important artist and the first that focuses on the works by the hand of a single Tibetan historical artist. The exhibition is presented by the Rubin Museum in partnership with the Lijiang Municipal Museum in Yunnan Province, China. The centerpiece of the exhibition is an inscribed set of paintings by the hand of the Tenth Karmapa, dated 1660, from the Lijiang Municipal Museum. Paintings from a related set by the Karmapa’s workshop form the other anchor for the exhibition and demonstrate that teams of artists were trained in the Tenth Karmapa’s fascinating and enigmatic style. Individual paintings and sculptures attributed to the Tenth Karmapa from collections worldwide are brought together for the first time and contextualized by these two aspects of his artistic production.
Curated by Karl Debreczeny

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