Tulkus 1880 to 2018
November 9, 2012–January 6, 2013
Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art
Piazza Mafalda di Savoia
10098 Rivoli (Turin), Italy
January 25–May 5, 2013
Witte de With | Center for Contemporary Art
Witte de Withstraat 50
3012 BR Rotterdam, The Netherlands
With photographs by
Daniel Kuma Bärlocher, Sue Byrne, Das Brothers, Alexandra David-Néel, Don Farber, James Giabrone, Marion Griebenow, Thomas L. Kelly, Kinsey Bros, Vijay Kranti, Mr. M. Linden, Heather Lindquist, Marvin Moore, Melina Mulas, Tashi Nangchen, Sarah Orbanic, Tashi Paljor, Tenzing Paljor, Matthew Pistono, Claire Pullinger, Raghu Rai, Matthieu Ricard, Joseph Francis Charles Rock, Tim Roodenrys, Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam, David Sassoon, Sandra Scales, Jurek Schreiner, Albert Shelton, Tseten Tashi, Gursed Tserenpil, Neal Watkins, John Claude White, David Zimmerman and many others.
Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art and Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art are pleased to present Tulkus 1880 to 2018—a project bringing together photographic portraits of tulkus dating from the early days of photography until today. In Tibetan Buddhism, a tulku is the recognised reincarnation of a previous Buddhist master (a highly realised teacher or lama, e.g. H.H. the Dalai Lama or H.H. Karmapa) who is able to choose the manner of their rebirth and can often reveal the place of their next birth by means of cryptic clues. It is believed that there are currently over two thousand tulkus. Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art hosts the first exhibition of the project with more than 1,000 photographs. This project (a work in progress) aims to achieve a comprehensive survey of most, if not all, tulkus belonging to the various Buddhist and Bonpo schools in all the areas of the world where Tibetan Buddhism is practiced. A complete photographic archive of this kind has never before been compiled.
An ancient Tibetan thangka portraying Tsuglag Gyatso, the Third Pawo Rinpoche (c. 1567–1630) and dating back to the first half of the 17th century is displayed as the centrepiece.
Extensive research has been carried out in many areas of the world by a large team of researchers, reaching out to tulkus, monasteries, cultural institutions and individuals.
No profit will be made from Tulkus 1880 to 2018. The second exhibition will take place at Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam, the Netherlands (co-commissioner of the project), where it will run from January 24 to May 5, 2013.
Tulkus 1880 to 2018 is curated by Davide Trapezi and co-commissioned by Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art and Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art. Special thanks go to all the sponsors who have supported this project: Galleria Massimo De Carlo, Milan / London, Galerie Perrotin, Hong Kong / Paris, Photographic Laboratory Grieger, Düsseldorf and generous contributions of anonymous donors.
Tulkus 1880 to 2018 at Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art is part of It’s Not the End of the World, a project conceived and promoted by Artissima in collaboration with five of Torino’s leading contemporary art museums and institutions.
The exhibition is co-produced by: