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'This temple, in the centre of the old town, was one of the oldest in Tibet, dating back to the 7th century. It was also the religious centre of Lhasa. The temple was on 4 levels reached by a small staircase at the back. On each of the three upper levels, small rooms full of statues of Buddha led off the main balcony. It was all quite dark, lit only by candles, and blackened by their smoke. Like the Potala, this temple was busy with pilgrims, dressed mainly in the traditional Tibetan style, many on their knees in prayer. 


When I started a painting of the courtyard, I douted with so many people about, I would be able to complete it. But few people bothered me, and at midday when the temple closed, one of the monks let me stay on for half an hour so I could finish it.


The picture above, I managed to paint standing up and using a deep window sill to rest my board and paints on. Again I had my doubts when I started, that I may be troubled too much to complete it. But though I gathered quite a crowd, as I was taller than most of the locals I was still able to see the view. 


One of the most fascinating places in Lhasa was a courtyard in a small temple at the back of Jokhang. Hundreds of pilgrims were talking and drinking tea amongst a jumble of firewood, old boxes and rubbish. Here, men were making Yak butter tea. The process seemed to be to melt down the butter in big pans and mix it with tea in the churn. The result was like drinking a cup of hot grease, and was most definitely an acquired taste." - MH

Jokhang Temple in Lhasa, 1988

  • All items are produced from original paintings by Martyn Hanks.

    Prints: Size is A4 (8.27" x 11.69"/210 x 297mm). Printed onto high quality 245gsm fine art watercolour paper to give the print an authentic look and feel. Supplied in a textured off white mount size 12" x 16" (305 x 406mm), backed and sealed in a clear cellophane wrap and delivered in a protective carton to ensure it reaches you in perfect condition.

    Cards: Size 7" X 5"/178 x 127mm. Packaged in a clear cellophane wrap with a top quality 150gsm self-seal white envelope.

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