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July 2015: Tibetan Art classes in the East Coast

We are still expanding our schedule, if you want to stay informed please subscribe to the newsletter on top of this page.

Buddhist meditationthangka class overviewrecharging your batteries when you draw the Buddha Shakyamuni

Omega Institute, Rhinebeck, NY

July 5/10, 2015 / Omega Arts Week

Green Tara

The Mother of All Buddhas

Carmen Mensink will give a thangka retreat at the annual Omega Arts Week, at the beautiful and renowned
Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY, about 2 hrs from NYC.

In this week you will learn how to draw Green Tara according to the Tibetan Thangka Tradition.
Green Tara is the most well-known Female Buddha and the manifestation of active compassion
and overcoming fears. She reaches out her hand to grant all wishes and is ready to step down
and help all who call upon her.
Tara is one of the most revered deities of Tibetan Buddhism and up until now there are numerous
stories of people that were saved from fears and difficulties while calling her name.

You will learn how to create Tibetan Buddhist art, experience the meditative aspect in this, learn about
the Green Tara mantra and about the Buddhist philosophy.
All set in the wonderful green premises of the Omega Institute, this thangka retreat will definitely
recharge your batteries!

New students will first learn about the basics of working with the traditional grid-proportions and draw
the Face of the Buddha, and can decide after that if they want to move on to creating the complete Buddha
or Green Tara.

A disappearing art form, thangka drawing is a meditation in itself, so we are immersed in a
combination of learning about and practicing art and Buddhism at the same time.
Through slide presentations of ancient thangkas, we also learn about the symbolism in Tibetan art
and Buddhist philosophy.

The retreat is suitable for everyone, including beginners with no drawing experience.
Students who have already drawn a Buddha in a previous thangka course with Carmen,
are also very welcome to start coloring or painting their Buddha in this week.

A list of things to bring will be sent upon registration.

Please visit Omega Arts Week with Carmen Mensink

Pictures of the 2014 Omega Retreat Week can be found here

Carmen teaches you how to create a tibetan maskcreating masks according to the different traditionMask of Tibet

Rubin Museum of Art, NYC

Sat July 11, 2015 / 11am-6pm

The Art of Masks

In this workshop we will explore the special 'Power of Masks' exhibit, with masks from all major world cultures.
After the guided tour we will make some sketches in the galleries of the masks that inspire us.
With her background in Tibetan art, Carmen will go deeper into the rich tradition of Tibetan Cham dance
that uses fantastic masks.
Bringing our sketches to the art room, we will use the rest of the day to create our own beautiful artwork
inspired by the masks you have seen, using different materials and techniques (paints, cardboard, fabric,
collage etc.). You don't need to have any art experience.

Events page of the Rubin Museum of Art for info & tickets

Pictures of Carmen Mensink's classes at the Rubin Museum of Art in NYC can be found here

workshop amulets creatingwinding the thread around a Tibetan paper amulettibetan gau box

Rubin Museum of Art, NYC

Wed July 15, 2015 / 6-8.30pm (with the possibility to stay till 9pm)

Create a Tibetan Amulet for Healing and Protection

Amulets have been used for thousands of years in Tibet. They are usually 'prescribed' and made by
the Lama to address specific life issues, such as health, happiness, prosperity, success or victory,
protection and attraction. Tibetan amulets -traditionally worn around the neck- have long been prized
for their efficacy and power.
After last year's success, Carmen Mensink is back to offer this wonderful workshop again, where she
will teach you all about Tibetan Amulets and you will learn how to create a customized amulet for
longevity, healing and protection.

Events page of the Rubin Museum of Art for info & tickets

paint mudras according to the appropriate thangka proportionsa dharma wheel adorns the hands of this Buddha on an old thangkahandmudra van Groene Tara geschilderd door Carmen Mensink

Tibet House, NYC (organized by the Shantideva Meditation Center)

Sat July 18, 2015 / 10am-5pm


Gestures of Enlightenment

In this Tibetan Buddhist Art day workshop you will learn how to draw mudras (special hand gestures of the enlightened beings) according to the Tibetan Thangka tradition. These include the mudras of the 5 Buddha Families and of Green Tara and White Tara. If there's enough time we will also color or paint them.

The workshop comes with a short meditation, lecture and a lot of individual guidance. Through the slideshow/talk on the subject you will learn everything about the background and meanings these mudras have in the Tibetan tradition. It is suitable for everyone, including beginners with no drawing experience whatsoever.

Materials to Bring:
A few sheets of thick drawing paper (tabloid size), HB pencil (preferably a refillable lead pencil), a ruler (preferably 12-inch)
and an eraser. Optional: colored pencils or painting materials (in the event there is time to color or paint after drawing).

Hours: 10am - 5pm
Where: Tibet House, 22 West 15th Street New York, NY 10011
Workshop fee: $ 75
Tibet House and Nalanda Institute Members: $ 67.50

Registration page of the Shantideva Meditation Center

Pictures of last year's Thangka classes at the Tibet House in NYC can be found here

Rubin Museum Party

Rubin Museum of Art, NYC

Sun July 19, 2015 / 12-4pm

Block Party

After last year's success, the Rubin Museum will again organize a Block Party on Sunday afternoon from 12.00-4pm.
There are workshop demonstrations, shows, good food and a great atmosphere. Everyone's welcome!

Buddha drawing and painting especially for teenagersCarmen explaining how to draw a Buddhateenagers & buddhist art


Annual Teen Thangka Classes

With a lot of joy Carmen will give a workshop again for the teen group at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York.
She has the ability to inspire the teenagers on their own path and teach them about Tibetan art, leaving them
very proud of the Buddhas they created!
Pictures of the annual Teen Thangka Classes in NYC can be found here

Preparing the thangka canvas.Heidi Virshup enjoying private thanka classes in our thangka studio in AmsterdamBudha statue painting according to tradition

Private thangka teachings / Buddha Statue painting

During her stay in NYC Carmen has some space in her schedule to offer private teachings
or to paint your Buddha statue according to the Tibetan tradition
For more information and bookings, please contact Carmen via: orders@carmenmensink.com

Testimonials of the 2014 thangka classes:
"Carmen's professionalism and visual arts acumen make her the consummate educator that she is. It was a joy and honor to become her student. As a result of what she taught me, I am inspired to practice, apply and hone the lessons our classes learned. It was instructive to become more aware of Eastern Art History and its rich legacy of beauty and
spiritual content.

I'm so pleased to have been blessed with the artistic and personal opportunity to have studied with the gifted and gracious artist Carmen Mensink. I will encourage all of my colleagues and students to take her courses. I look forward to enrolling in additional courses when she returns to instruct in the New York Metropolitan area!

Many thank yous for this enriching art making experience. I received positive feedback, superb instruction and ongoing encouragement in order to acquire hands-on knowledge about these ancient aestethics, materials and skills."

Amy Sue McPartlan, New York, USA
Participant at thangka courses at the Rubin Museum of Art and at the Omega Institute

"Carmen Mensink is very knowledgable as if it were second nature to her. She explained the history behind thangka painting, took us in the gallery
of the museum and explained the intricacy of the exhibits.

Carmen taught us that this class was not just about art, it is a combination of different aspects of Buddhism, respect for the lineage, awareness of living beings around you, and including meditation and mantras.
I believe this is the absolute correct way to teach a class such as this."

Testimonial on an (anonymous) survey the Rubin Museum sent after class
Participant at a Thangka Painting course over 2 consecutive weekends at the
Rubin Museum of Art, New York City, USA

"Having been stuck in my own art practice for a number of years,
Carmen's class helped me not only break through that stuckness,
but also integrate new, old & unfolding learnings.
It is a beautiful amalgamation of mindfulness, art, meditation.

We learned, applied & had opportunity to try new techniques & ask plenty of questions. I look forward to taking class again with Carmen next year. Maybe we can paint a Tara next time!

Much gratitude to Carmen & to Omega.
This was the perfect venue for this practice & learning!"

Lisa Evert, Ohio, USA
Participant at the Retreat Week at Omega Institute, Rhinebeck, NY

Introduction to Buddhist artCarmen's students drawing their first Budhaan evening on lotusses and how to draw them

Sangye Menla, the blue BudhaLearn more on traditiobal thangka painting wit Carmen at the Rubin Museum of ArtLearn how to draw tibetan healing plants with Carmen Mensink

draw buddhist offerings in thangka classofferings of seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting and touchingthangka painting colorings

Some of the places where Carmen teaches or has been teaching:

Thangka students at the Rubin Museum of Art working on their Buddhist DrawingGreen Tara DrawingAntique thangka at the Rubin Museum of Art

Rubin Museum of Art, New York City

Buddha Face drawingTeen Thangka group at Rubin Museum of ArtThangka workshops for teens at Rubin Museum of Art

Teen Thangka Workshops at the Rubin Museum of Art, New York City

Columbia UniversityThangka art class at Columbia UniversityStudents working on Buddha faces at the Art department of Columbia University

Columbia University, New York City

The Buddha eye is beautifulspecial thangka workshop space in New Yorkexplanation of thangka materials and techniques

Shantideva Meditation Center, New York City

Showing the drawings at the Chenrezig Buddhist Center in PhiladelphiaTibetan mandala painting workshops in the USAgreen Tara tangka workshops in Philadelphia

Chenrezig Tibetan Buddhist Center, Philadelphia

tibetan art class in Pittsburghbuddhist art class room in PittsburghWhite Tara thangka drawing of one of Carmen Mensink's students

Three Rivers Dharma Center, Pittsburgh

great food at the Milarepa CenterThe Milarepa CenterThangka class at Milarepa Center

Milarepa Center, Vermont

drawing of a buddhastudents thangka painting at the Guhyasamaya centerWhite Tara drawing by a thangka student of Carmen Mensink

Guhyasamaya Center, Reston (near Washington DC)