November 10, 2015
Leslie Rinchen-Wongmo is a textile artist and caretaker of a sacred Tibetan tradition of fabric art. She stitches bits of silk into elaborate figurative mosaics that bring the transformative images of Buddhist meditation to life.
She calls her work ‘Threads of Awakening’ and encourages people to follow the threads of connection and joy in their own lives. Trained in Dharamsala, India, she participated in the creation of silk appliqué thangkas* for His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Sogyal Rinpoche, and numerous Tibetan monasteries and dharma centers.
In a private audience at the end of her apprenticeship, the Dalai Lama blessed Leslie’s work and encouraged her to use this Tibetan art form to inspire people of other cultures and religions. Leslie’s thangkas have been exhibited internationally and featured in magazines such as FiberArts, Fiber Art Now, and Spirituality & Health. Her story is beautifully told in the 2008 documentary, Creating Buddhas: the Making and Meaning of Fabric Thangkas.
Through her Stitching Buddhas Virtual Apprentice Program, she teaches the sacred craft to women around the globe, helping them connect the spiritual and creative threads in their own lives. Her forthcoming book, Threads of Awakening: the Transformative Power of Tibet’s Sacred Textile Art, will be the first book in any language to explore the ancient art of Tibetan appliqué and to reveal its unique stitches.
Back in California after two decades abroad, Leslie now lives by the beach with two cats and is often asked why she smiles so much.
Posted from: Clarence Caldwells True Life Academy