PFSTA China Centre - Cosmic Body: Principles of the Buddhist Figure course

Student work in progress

Jamyang Lodro Rinpoche gave an opening talk at Jinze Arts Centre, Shanghai, to PFSTA China Centre students taking the Cosmic Body: Principles of the Buddhist Figure course. The talk provided a philosophical framework and spiritual guidance that prepared the students’ mind set for the two-week course, which is being tutored by Rinpoche and two younger generation of Jonang Thangka painters. Twelve students from all over China are participating in the course.

The students are undertaking an intensive programme to give them a basic understanding of the traditional crafts and arts of the Jonang School of Thangka painting, especially the concepts of measurement (proportion of body and five facial features), line, and colour. The study of measurement in Buddhist figure design is a form of Buddhist geometry that depicts the corporeal measurements of the Enlightened Being.

In the first week of the course, students were taught how to make brush pens, pigments from minerals (including gold), and how to prepare a canvas. They also learnt the halftone method, achieved by dotting paints on the canvas, and produced a painting of a lotus flower.

The PFSTA China Centre was co-founded by the Prince’s Foundation School of Traditional Arts (PFSTA) in London and the Yuan Centre in Suzhou. It honours the heritage of the traditional arts and crafts of China through education programmes aimed at reinvigorating tradition within the contemporary context.

The programmes enable a meaningful engagement with Chinese artistic heritage and traditions on different levels - practical, cultural and inspirational - within the contemporary context.

If you are interested in taking a course at the China Centre or finding out more about any of the activities at the Centre, please follow the link to the contact page on the PFSTA China Centre website: https://www.pstachina.com/en/contact