Opening on Thursday, January 11, 2024 from 6 to 8 pm
Almine Rech Paris is pleased to present What Is It You See, Tsherin Sherpa's first solo exhibition with the gallery, on view from January 11 to February 17, 2024.
Tsherin Sherpa was born and raised in Kathmandu and from the age of thirteen studied Tibetan Buddhist scroll painting with his father. In his late twenties, he relocated to California, where he continued his traditional art practice before moving beyond its boundaries to establish his own, unique artistic expression.
Through distortion, deconstruction, rupture, and rearrangement, Sherpa stretches, bends, reconfigures, and repurposes elements from Tibetan art, merging them with modern imagery. Through these transformations, he contemplates the collisions of culture and identity negotiated by displaced people. Sherpa’s creations celebrate Himalayan culture while simultaneously challenging its frequently romanticized representations.
— John Henry Rice, curator at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and originator of the artist's recent retrospective exhibition and catalogue Tsherin Sherpa: Spirits
"The Swirl motifs are actually derivative of Tibetan Buddhist protector iconography. Growing up, I was formally trained as a traditional Tibetan thangka artist by my father. Because of the symbolism of various elements within the iconography, the tradition requires one to copy the exact image over and over until one masters this tradition. After almost 20 years of practicing as a Traditional thangka artist, I was a bit jaded by the traditional form and was keen to discover new form within the form. By working on the forms, through abstraction and manipulation of the traditional form, my practice is a journey in search of the essence of the Buddhist iconography."
— Tsherin Sherpa