Pema Gyeltshen

The Majestic Phunakha Dzong - Contemporary Bhutanese Painting

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Artist: Pema Gyeltshen, Bhutan
Title: The Majestic Punakha Dzong
Year: 2023
Medium: Acrylic on canvas 
Size : 61x91 cm (2x3 ft) - Delivered without frame.

This picturesque structure, known as Punakha Dzong, was erected by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel, a Tibetan Buddhist lama who played a pivotal role in unifying Bhutan into a kingdom. It continues to be an active site for the coronation of every Bhutanese king and serves as the winter residence for the kingdom's official monastic community. Situated at the confluence of the Pho Chhu and Mo Chhu Rivers, Punakha Dzong is a 17th-century fortress with a history spanning nearly four centuries.

Pema Gyeltshen was born in 1983 in Trashigang, Bhutan. His artistic journey began in his youth when he frequently doodled in school notebooks instead of focusing on lessons. In 1998, he joined the Voluntary Artists Studio Thimphu (VAST Bhutan), laying the foundation for his career as an artist.

After high school, he faced a challenging period of substance abuse and aimless wandering but had a transformative realization. He made a resolute U-turn, gained practical work experience, and honed his character.

In 2012, Pema committed fully to art, overcoming numerous challenges. He now concentrates on creating art, participating in exhibitions, and sharing his work globally, successfully selling his artworks both within and beyond Bhutan. CLICK for more information on him and contemporary art in Bhutan.