The “Space for Mind, Space for Art” exhibition was the first major exhibition the Diamond Way Foundation has undertaken in London or the UK. For the first time the exhibition linked the treasures of Tibetan Buddhism to modern art and local artists. It was held in Lambeth at The Spring from 28th May – 3rd June 2012, and was made possible by a number of donors and sponsors.
The exhibition aimed to build a rich and atmospheric experience for people to enter into the realms of the Buddhas and a contemporary art response. This came from local artists in Lambeth whose works were displayed alongside pieces of national significance kindly loaned by the British Council Collection.
The Tibetan exhibition brought together rare and ancient paintings, sculpture and other objects from Tibet, Nepal and the surrounding Himalayan region, providing a fascinating insight into the history and culture of the area.
A complementary programme of talks, film screenings, and guided tours of the exhibition also provided opportunities to learn about the artworks and their significance within Buddhism.
Guest speakers included Dr Tadeusz Skorupski talking about “Consciousness between lives”, and Manfred Seegers (MPhil) and Dr. Eva Seegers gave a lecture about “Buddhist Symbolism”.
The whole event was launched at a private view, widely attended by local dignitaries, community representatives and different faiths.
“What a wonderful contact with belief, the local community and local artists. Hopefully there are more to come, Lambeth needs communities of interest and hope to work together in this way.” Comment left in the Visitor Book
The inspiring key-note speech on the history of Buddhist art was given by Lama Jampa Thaye, a Buddhist master trained in the Sakya and Karma Kagyu traditions.
The exhibition featured more than 50 separate items including gilded statues, ritual ornaments and embroidered scroll paintings called thangkas. The largest thangka stretches more than 16 feet from bottom to top, while the smallest sculpture measures just 4in tall.
The oldest piece in the exhibition is a 3rd century stone statue of the Buddha, carved in the ancient kingdom of Gandhara – part of modern-day Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Collections of exceptional Buddhist art have previously been displayed by the Diamond Way Foundation at the European Parliament in Brussels, in honour of the 2008 European Year of Intercultural Dialogue. The first collection was assembled in 2001, and there have been subsequent exhibitions in Germany, Spain, Finland, Lithuania, Czech Republic and Hungary, attracting many thousands of interested visitors. The next exhibition will be in Innsbruck, Austria, in October 2012 at the “Kaiserliche Hofburg”. Uniquely, when not on display, many of the pieces are still actively used within Buddhist devotional practices.
The exhibition was warmly received by visitors from the Vauxhall and Lambeth area. Many people expressed their feelings in the visitors’ book:
So impressed with what you’ve done to this space. Looking forward to having you as neighbours. Very beautiful and peaceful.
A fascinating insight in both the history and the culture and even about the way in which art represents the truth of clarity of expression that underlines this very interesting way of life.
It is wonderful that you have come here and brought your special peace to this lovely space. Well done! You have made a very impressive and sensitive exhibition. I am looking forward to being in your Black Prince Road building.
Amazing exhibition!!! Congratulations!!! What an exhibition!
Talks and films were very complementary. Thoroughly enjoyed it (even coming back later!).
Amazing exhibition, which I stumbled upon on my way home. Unexpected but it made it all the more interesting. I’m going to check out Diamond Way and look out for space for mind.
Thanks for the brilliant explanations too.Thought-provoking, beautiful, exquisitely crafted and at times powerfully moving. Also learned a lot about Tibetan Buddhism which I knew little about before! Thanks for the meditation – I feel calmer now.
Very interesting, a wonderful experience.Brilliant. Than you so much for sharing.
Truly inspiring, infused with life, beauty and emotion.This exhibition was so impressive and expressive as well that I hardly can find words…
Thank you so much for that incredible experience in London. I appreciate it so much!
Joyfully vibrating… Thank you for this beautiful exhibition!
Thanks for this exhibition! It is really great, I especially like the big drawings.
I’m deeply impressed by the highest quality of the presented exhibits. This amazing exhibition proves how much the culture can contribute to the modern, global society.
I love Govinda’s work! Fantastic!
Thanks very much. Beautiful and well conceived exhibition.Very good impressions! I am happy that this even could happen.
Breathtakingly inspiring – Thank you!It’s great to see an exhibition like this – bringing Tibetan Buddhism to the UK. I especially enjoyed the guided tour and the statues.
It was my friend Russell’s 50th birthday and we were not disappointed! Warmth for life, thank you.
Just a beautiful experience to see wonderful artwork with long standing tradition and values. Coming from Asian faiths, I can relate to the themes and the tour was really illuminating. Thank you!