Weavers Recognised for Promoting Arts and Crafts

The 16th National Design and Art competition was organised in five different categories – gho (weaving), kira (weaving), embroidery, traditional painting and contemporary arts. It was held to promote unique arts and crafts by providing a platform for artisans.

The winners of the 16th National Design and Art Competition. (Source: http://www.kuenselonline.com)

Tashi Yuden’s lungserma, which took her about a year to complete, bagged the first prize in Gho category during the 16th National Design and Art Competition (NDAC) at the Royal Textile Academy (RTA) in Thimphu yesterday.

The 44-year-old housewife has been weaving since she was 15. She said that creating new motifs has been difficult while weaving. “I won the second prize in Kira category in 2008.” She said she would participate again as it provides an opportunity for weavers and artists to continue working on creating new pieces.

Competition promotes Bhutan’s tradition arts and crafts

The competition was organised in five different categories – gho (weaving), kira (weaving), embroidery, traditional painting and contemporary arts. It was held to promote unique arts and crafts by providing a platform to artisans.

Her Royal Highness Princess Euphelma Choden Wangchuck, awarded cash prizes of Nu 120,000, Nu 65,000 and Nu 32,500 to the top three winners in each category.

Four weavers, three embroiderers, two master painters and a master sculptor were also awarded the Royal patron’s meritorious awards. Cash prizes of Nu 10,000 were awarded in recognition of the artisans’ contribution to the conservation of arts and crafts in the country.

Criteria of the competition

The criteria included aspects of aesthetics in terms of originality, colour, creativity, shape and size, technical application and skills in terms of surface decoration, details, skills, materials used and marketing potential.

There were 61 participants in the category of kira, 10 in gho, 19 in embroidery, 33 in traditional painting and 72 in contemporary arts. Ugyen Yuden bagged the first spot in the kira category, Norbu in embroidery, Tshewang Tenzin in painting and Passang Dema in the contemporary arts.

About 17 prize winning pieces would be exhibited at the RTA for a week.

Kind support from Mr and Ms Alan Bickell

Curator Pema Chhoden Wangchuk said that the two new categories were included in the competition with the support of Mr and Ms Alan Bickell. “Mr and Ms Alan Bickell are frequent visitors to Bhutan and to encourage artists to continue creating fine arts, they have agreed to fund the annual competition for the next five years beginning this year.”

RTA in collaboration with the Textile Museum, Department of Culture and Voluntary Artists’ Studio, Thimphu, have organised the competition.


By Rinchen Zangmo (This article has been edited for the Bhutan Times)

This article first appeared on Kuensel.


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