Illuminating Tara

A beautifully painted image of 21 Tara has been given a new Home at Jamyang, in a commanding new setting. 

The artwork, unsigned as is the tradition in Tibetan spiritual artworks, used to hang in the café space at Jamyang; in the quiet summer of this year we began to search for a beautiful new home for Arya Tara. With an 8ft high canvas, the high ceilings and walls of the Old Courthouse presented ideas  – our eyes turned to the liminal space of the North corridor and imagined how it could be transformed. 

Molly Rigg, former gallerist of London’s Somerset House and now Head of Events at The Piece Hall, one of North’s foremost cultural destinations, kindly gave advice on framing and lighting solutions to enhance the art work and ambient solutions to create a gallery style setting for the work while protecting the Grade II listed aspects of the space. 

In April ’21 we set work raising funds with the community to realise the modern vision, and partnered with the specialist framers ‘Art Works’ to draw up plans – the design was to incorporate light within the frame, as a symbolic light offering to Tara, and under the advice of Geshe Namdak the sleek frame was gilded in gold, a further offering to Arya Tara. It took over 6 months for Jake, Simon (pictured) and the team at Art Works to expertly design and hand craft the frame – in the meantime we invited community member Estelle Rose to Jamyang, as she kindly offered to help with restoration work as the painting had aged and frayed during its time on the café wall.

Our resident volunteers sprang into action, painting the corridors and doorways creating the setting for the artwork as we awaited delivery. On the last Basic Program teaching weekend, Tara arrived back at Jamyang encased in a beautiful new one-of-a-kind frame and hung as source of inspiration with prayers and consecration led by Geshe-la.