Arts·Video

For these Tibetan artists, The Snowlion Club is a place to express themselves — and be part of a new family

Members of the collective explain why having a place to come together as Tibetan artists living in Canada means so much.

Member Tenzin Tsering: 'I've always kind of felt a strange misplace in where I belong or where I'm from'

Collective The Snowlion Club is made up of Tibetan artists looking for a place to showcase their history, culture and tradition. Filmmakers: Ngawang Datok, Geoff Doner and Andrea Battersby. 6:14

The Snowlion Club hosted their inaugural art exhibition in Toronto's "Little Tibet" this past September. And the youth-led art collective has a dream: that the streetwear designed and adopted by young Tibetans living in Toronto will raise awareness and show solidarity for kids and families struggling inside Tibet today.

"It is actually a platform that we're trying to create for a younger generation Tibetans who don't have that outlet or are looking for an outlet to express themselves through art and just having a safe place for them," says member Tashi Lama.

The Snowlion Club engages peer Tibetan youth — through art and design — to share the historical art and culture of Tibet, and it provides emerging artists multiple platforms to explore their own creative voices. Having built a solid presence online, The Snowlion Club felt ready for their first art exhibition, "Thrive and Prosper," that featured nine emerging Tibetan creatives expressing their experience of exile.

(CBC Arts)

In this video by Ngawang Datok, Geoff Doner and Andrea Battersby, you'll meet the core members of the art collective and some of the artists featured. This event took place in Parkdale's "Little Tibet", the Toronto neighbourhood that is home to the largest exile Tibetan community outside of Asia, since the 1959 hostile takeover and subsequent occupation of Tibet. Member Tenzin Chosank explains, "Tibet has been an occupied country for more than 60 years now and there is always this talk about whether we're going to get full independence, whether we're going to find a system where we're going to live under China. And I personally believe, and I think we personally believe, that non-violent ways such as art is an excellent medium to talk about this issue."

Follow The Snowlion Club here.

Tenzin Chosank - Heaven Bound, 2019. (Tenzin Tsering)
Tenzin Tsering - Tibetan Girl, 2019. (Tenzin Tsering)
Kalsang Tsultim - Chamm Dancers, 2019. (Kalsang Tsultim)

About the Author

Geoff Doner and Andrea Battersby are the founders of Bureau Of Power And Light, an art collective producing multimedia artworks that foster empathy and cultivate positive social impact.

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