Selecting and Purchasing a Thangka

Tibetan thangkas [pronounced tong’-ka] painted by artists of the Dharmapala Centre are masterpieces of Buddhist art, representing centuries old Buddhist iconographic rules and months of meditative discipline and dedication on the artists’ part. Because of the sacredness and uniqueness of these items, they cannot be mass-produced and are not amenable to virtual shopping carts. Please read on for information on the process of purchasing a Dharmapala Centre thangka for yourself or as a special gift.

As you move around this web site, you will see a vast number of thangkas: Shakyamuni Buddha thangkas, Wheel of Life thangkas, mandalas, etc. This array of thangkas is intended to demonstrate the variety and singular beauty of the types of thangkas that may be produced; many, but not all, of the displayed items have already been sold. If a piece you are particularly fond of is not available for purchase, you may simply request one of a similar type. The benefit of this approach is that you may specify the size and general colour scheme of the thangka you have chosen. You may even send in a colour photo of a thangka you would like to have approximately reproduced.

Prices are not published on the web page because of the constant flux in currency values, the varying costs of delivery depending on country, and the occasional need to engage master artists who normally do not belong to our organization.

To inquire about the pricing and availability of thangkas or to request a special order, please contact our representative in Germany, Mr. Holm Triesch. He will answer all your questions, including those related to brocade mounting, dedication inscription, and the option of a consecration puja in a Nepalese monastery.

As mentioned above, please remember that thangka paintings are sacred creations. Each one takes time. If you order a painting, you will need to exercise patience. Even the smallest mandala takes two months to create. Larger thangkas or extremely intricate thangkas often take one year or longer to complete. If you travel to Kathmandu, you can easily purchase thangkas that take only a few days to create. These are the so-called “Junk Thangkas”, intended for tourists. They lack the intricacy, refinement, and artist’s devotion that each thangka from the Dharmapala Centre offers. So when you special order a thangka, please know that your patience will be well-rewarded. For references from previous customers, please visit our guestbook.

Finally, if for any reason, you are displeased with your thangka, you do not have to pay. Simply return the thangka. That’s all. All of our customers are astounded by the quality of their purchases. But if, for whatever reason, you find that you are not satisfied, you may simply return the thangka and no payment will be required.

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