Events & Opportunities

Tibetan Studies Events in New York City

Friday, September 23, 7- 9pm


Trace Foundation will be hosting a screening of the acclaimed filmmaker Pema Tseden's fourth feature film The Sacred Arrow (2014).

"For centuries, the villages of Lhalung and Damo in Amdo have held an annual archery competition to demonstrate skills and strength, but also to keep peace in the region. But this year, the two leading archers clash and harmony enjoyed by the villagers is threatened in this tale of jealousy and pride, love and honor, and the navigation between the old and the new."

The director will introduce the film and the screening will be followed by a Q&A.

Venue: Trace Foundation, 132 Perry Street, Suite 2B, New York, NY. Phone: (212) 367-8490.  REGISTRATION REQUIRED.


Saturday, September 24, 2016 at 7:00pm

Latse Library with Black Tent presents:

" Homeland: Stories from Tibet"

A bilingual reading featuring writer and filmmaker Pema Tseden with Pema Bhum, Sonam Wangdue & Tenzin Dickie.

Venue: Phayul II Restaurant, 89-17 Northern Boulevard, Jackson Heights, NY 11372

Nearest train stop is 90 street/Elmhurst Avenue on the 7 train.


Tuesday, September 27, 2016 at 6:10pm

The Weatherhead East Asian Institute, the Film Program at Columbia, & Modern Tibetan Studies present:

"From story to script: Translating Pema Tseden's Tharlo to the screen"

A discussion between the writer-director and the translator of the award-winning, breakthrough Tibetan feature film Tharlo, with clips from the film and pre-publication presentation of Jessica Yeung’s book, Tharlo - The Story & the Script.

Moderator: Ying Qian

Venue: SIPA, Room 918, 9th Floor, Columbia University
 420 West 118th St, c/o Amsterdam, Manhattan

Registration not required


Wednesday, September 28 – Tuesday, October 4, 2016


MoMA will be hosting a screening of Pema Tseden's Tharlo (2015).

"Tharlo (Shide Nyima), an innocent shepherd living a secluded life in the mountains, has been ordered by the local police chief to obtain an ID. Claiming, “I know who I am,” Tharlo doesn’t see the point of the document, but he reluctantly travels into town to have an ID photo taken. There he encounters a young, modern, and beautiful barber, Yangsto. Immediately smitten by her charms, Tharlo spends the night with Yangsto at the karaoke bar and discovers a world completely unknown to him.

Renowned Tibetan filmmaker Pema Tseden continues the exploration of the conflicts between modern and traditional Tibetan life he began in previous features Old Dog, The Search, and Silent Holy Stones. Shot entirely in black and white, Tharlo reveals in vivid contrast the simplicity of the countryside and the disorientation of a fast-changing small town.

Venue: 11 West 53 Street, New York


Wedneday, October 5, 2016, 6:30 PM - 7:30 PM

"The Rubin Museum of Art Presents: Writing Secret Lhasa, Contemporary Female Poets"

Join Natasha Kimmet, exhibition curator of Monumental Lhasa, and Tashi Chodron, Assistant Manager of Himalayan Cultural Programs, for a tour of the exhibition, followed by a poetry reading in the sixth floor gallery.

Tsering Lama, Sonam Tsomo and Tenzin Dickie, three rising contemporary female writers based in New York will read their work in Tibetan and English. The reading will be followed by a panel discussion on the rich history of Tibetan literature, making connections between the writer’s own work and the sacred city of Lhasa.

About the Speakers

Tsering Lama’s work has appeared in The Malahat Review, Grain Magazine, Vela Mag, La.Lit, Himal SouthAsian and Brave New Play Rites Anthology. She is also a co-founder of Lhakardiaries, a blog for Tibetan cultural exploration and expression.

Sonam Tsomo is a poet who writes in Tibetan, English and Hindi. She has a degree in creative writing from Miami University and publishes in Khabdha online journal, one of the most popular Tibetan literary sites.

Tenzin Dickie’s writings and translations have appeared in Tibetan Review, Indian Literature, Cultural Anthropology,The Washington Post online, Words Without Borders and Modern Poetry in Translation.She was a 2014-2015 fellow of the American Literary Translators’ Association.

Venue: 150 West 17th St.
New York, NY 10011

1 (212) 620-5000


Saturday, October 15, 2016, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

"The Rubin Museum of Art Presents: Monumental Lhasa Tour, Open House New York"

Exhibition curator Natasha Kimmet will lead a free public tour at the Rubin Museum to explore their newest exhibition Monumental Lhasa: Fortress, Palace, Temple.

Learn more about key Tibetan monuments and the architectural landmarks that became powerful visual icons of Lhasa, the holy capital of Tibet.

For two days each October, the Annual Open House New York Weekend unlocks the doors of New York’s most important buildings, offering an extraordinary opportunity to experience the city and meet the people who design, build, and preserve New York.

Admission to the Museum is free during OHNY weekend.

Venue: 150 West 17th St.
New York, NY 10011

1 (212) 620-5000


Saturday, October 22, 2016, 4:30 PM – 6:30 PM

"Videology Bar & Cinema Presents Tharlo"

Film Screening

Dir. Pema Tseden. 124 min. 2015.

Venue: Videology Bar & Cinema

308 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY


Wednesday, October 26, 201, 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

"The Rubin Museum of Art Presents: Photography and Tibet, Book Launch and Lecture by Clare Harris"

In this talk Oxford professor Clare Harris introduces her new book Photography and Tibet, the first historical and anthropological survey of the subject. Featuring stunning visual material that has rarely been made public or discussed before, Photography and Tibet offers remarkable new insights into the attempts of foreign and Tibetan photographers to document the region from the mid-nineteenth century to the present.

Harris will present some of the extraordinary images and individuals she researched for this book and analyze how they participate in generating potent imaginings of Tibet, ranging from the malignant to the benign.

A book signing of Photography and Tibet will take place after the lecture. Copies are available for purchase in the Museum Shop.

This talk is presented in conjunction with the Museum exhibition Monumental Lhasa.

About the Speaker

Clare Harris is a professor of visual anthropology at the University of Oxford, curator for Asian collections at the Pitt Rivers Museum, and a fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford, in the United Kingdom. She has published widely on Tibet and the Himalayas with a particular emphasis on art, photography, museums, and the politics of representation. Her award-winning publications include The Museum on the Roof of the World: Art, Politics and the Representation of Tibet (University of Chicago Press), which received the E. Gene Smith prize from the Association of Asian Studies in 2014. Her latest book, Photography and Tibet (Reaktion Books), is underpinned by many years of research in museums and archives and in Tibetan communities. Harris has also curated exhibitions and directed research projects that focus on Tibet’s visual and material heritage, including the Tibet Album, a website featuring six thousand historic photographs of Tibet. She is currently working on a new study of photography in the Himalayas with a fellowship from the Leverhulme Trust.

Tickets: $18.00

Rubin Museum Member Tickets: $16.20

Venue: 150 West 17th St.
New York, NY 10011

1 (212) 620-5000


THURSDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2016, 12noon - 1:30 PM

At Snow Mountain Lab tse: Social Critique in Tibetan Comedy from A mdo / Dr. Timothy Thurston (Smithsonian Institute, Washington, DC)

Timothy Thurston received his PhD from the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures at The Ohio State University, and is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Smithsonian Institution's Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. His research focuses on Tibetan language and culture at the nexus of tradition and modernity, and looks in particular at television comedy.

no charge.

Venue:  SIPA, Room 918, 9th Floor, Columbia University
420 West 118th St, c/o Amsterdam, Manhattan


Paths of the Soul : A Journey into Humanity and Faith (Movie Night at Rigpa New York!)

Paths of the Soul” is an astonishing journey of redemption, faith and devotion. Acclaimed filmmaker Zhang Yang blends documentary and fiction to follow a group of Tibetan villagers who leave their families and homes to make a Buddhist “bowing pilgrimage” – laying their bodies flat on the ground after every few steps – along the 1,200 mile road to Lhasa, Tibet’s holy capital.

Rigpa New York:  171 W. 29th St. 3rd Floor; New York, NY 10001 


FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2016, 7: 00 PM - 8:30 PM

"The Rubin Museum of Art Presents: Tibet's Earliest Guidebook, Book Launch and Lecture by Matthew Akester"

During the 1990s, Matthew Akester walked the length and breadth of Central Tibet in the tracks of the greatest modern master of Tibetan Buddhism, Jamyang Khyentsé Wangpo, 1820-1892. Akester will share his extraordinary research adventure involving more than a decade of independent travel, textual archaeology, field interviews, and photo research, and introduce his new book Jamyang Khyentsé Wangpo’s Guide to Central Tibet, an illustrated translation of the earliest and best-known guidebook to Tibet.

About the Speaker

Matthew Akester is an independent researcher and translator who has been based in the Himalayan region for the past 25 years. His interests include the history of Lhasa, contemporary Tibetan history, and autobiography and memory in Occupied Tibet. In addition to the present book, he has published several translations and research articles spanning both classical and modern studies. He has worked as consultant for organizations including the Tibet Information Network, Tibet Heritage Fund, and Columbia University’s Modern Tibetan Studies program. He was a lecturer with the School for International Training and an editor and contributor to numerous books and studies of Tibetan history and culture.

​Tickets: $20.00

Rubin Museum Member Tickets: $18.00

Venue: 150 West 17th St.
New York, NY 10011

1 (212) 620-5000





Local Exhibits

Saturday, January 16, 2016 - January 17, 2017

"The Metropolitan Museum of Art Presents: The Arts of Nepal and Tibet: Recent Gifts"

The Met's collection of Nepalese and Tibetan art has recently been transformed by a series of major gifts. This installation features both promised and recently gifted works that are now integrated into the newly refurbished galleries—including an important 12th-century Tibetan bronze Padmapani, a 13th-century bronze Vajravarahi, an important 16th-century Tibetan Hevajra mandala tangka, and a spectacular brass stupa (chorten). The Nepalese gallery has been enriched by a large polychromed wood sculpture of the Goddess of Dance (Nrtyadevi). These works reflect the generosity of Steve and Sharon Davies, Florence and Herbert Irving, Ann and Gilbert Kinney, and the Zimmerman family.

Venue: Gallery 252 and 253, The Met Fifth Avenue

1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10028

1 (212) 535-7710

Friday, September 16, 2016 – January 9, 2017

"The Rubin Museum of Art Presents: Monumental Lhasa: Fortress, Palace, Temple"

Architectural landmarks act as anchors for the identity of a place as well as focal points for associated stories and memories. Much like the Eiffel Tower is the pervasive symbol of France and the Statue of Liberty represents New York City, beginning in the seventeenth century, key Tibetan monuments became powerful visual icons of Lhasa, the holy capital of Tibet.

Monumental Lhasa: Fortress, Palace, Temple is the first exhibition of its kind to explore rare images of central Tibet’s most iconic monuments as they were seen by Tibetans and Westerners prior to the mid-twentieth century. The exhibition explores how image-making relates to placemaking and how the production and transmission of images contributes to the iconic character, familiarity, and power of important landmarks.

By bringing objects from the Rubin Museum together with art from public and private collections across Europe and North America, this exhibition presents a distinct genre, encompassing paintings, photographs, drawings, and film. The exhibition revives one of the original functions of these images—to transmit the holy city of Lhasa to a remote audience. In Monumental Lhasa Rubin visitors are able to vicariously visit and experience the main architectural sites of Tibet through historical and contemporary eyes.

Curated by Natasha Kimmet

Venue: 150 West 17th St, New York, NY 10011           

1 (212) 620-5000        


Thursday, October 13, 2016

"Trace Foundation Presents: TibetColor: Silk Patterns + Inspirations"

The first exhibition of Tibetan thangka and appliqué masters Terris and Leslie Nguyen Temple Tibetan thangka and appliqué artists Terris and Leslie Nguyen

For two weeks in October, the two artists will explore their work and passion for the natural world through an inaugural exhibition, workshops, and screenings of a captivating documentary about the creation of giant silk appliqué thangkas in Tibet.

During their stay in New York City each artist will also deliver a workshop centered around his or her personal connection with art: Terris will lead an event where he walks participants through decorating a canvas bag, and Leslie will guide a session combining a body-based yoga sequence into intuitive image making.

Some of the art exhibited will be for sale.

132 Perry St., Suite 2B, New York, NY 10014
1 (212) 367-8490


Fellowships, Jobs & Other Opportunities


Internships at the Trace Foundation (New York City)

New internship positions are regularly announced at this non-profit aid organization.

Summer Study Opportunities

Tibetan, Sanskrit and Nepalese summer intensive language courses, including beginning classical Tibetan, three levels of colloquial Tibetan (beginning, intermediate, and advanced), beginning Sanskrit, and beginning and intermediate Nepalese. An introductory Buddhist studies intensive, combining study and a meditation practicum, is also offered.

Instructor: Professor Tsetan Chonjore. Tibetan language study for students at all levels, with special emphasis on oral fluency.

Instructor: Jonathan Samuels. Intensive language course which will develop the basic skills necessary for smooth communication. The focus will be upon the Central Tibetan dialect

Introduction to Speaking, Reading and Writing Tibetan Language:   Introduction to the Tibetan language, alphabet, reading and writing, and beginning grammar for those interested in preparing for formal language study, personal interest, and Tibetan culture and Buddhism. Instructor: Craig Preston.

Classical Tibetan Summer Intensive:  Six-week or two-week course options for students at beginning, intermediate and advance levels. Self-described as "an excellent foundation for students applying to or entering MA or Ph.D. programs in Buddhist Studies as well as a rare opportunity for students seeking knowledge of Classical Tibetan for their personal study and practice."

While no details are offered yet, Tibetan is listed as one of the courses offered for the 2015 summer program. Previous sessions are described here.


Tibetan Studies Librarian
Dr. Lauran R. Hartley
304M Kent Hall
(212) 854-9875