Saturday, September 18, 2010

How to hang a Thangka







Not every thangka will exhibit all these parts.
For example, many do not contain the “door” in the lower part of the brocade mounting.

Assuming your thangka has the standard cords or straps that keep a rolled-up thangka rolled up, unwrap these and tie them together (as shown at the top of the diagram above). I suggest tying in a bow rather than a knot, to facilitate later untying and re-rolling.
Place one hook or nail in the wall at a height which will place the heart of the deity above your eye level. As a sign of respect and to enhance the inspirational quality of the image, you’ll want to look upwards to it.
Hang the tied cords (or, in their absence, the string at the back or top of the upper dowel) over the nail.
Let the thangka unroll slowly, controlling its fall with your hands.
When the thangka is fully extended and level, gather the silk cover in your hand and tuck it under the string or fine cord at the front of the upper dowel, creating a decorative flourish. My next “how-to” post will describe in illustrated detail how to arrange this cover drape.