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A Tibetan carver and Lag Zo project participant in Yushu, China, carves the mantra om mani padme om into a stone collected from a local river. Photo by Dawa Drolma, Smithsonian Institution

Lag Zo | ལག་བཟོ།

Lag Zo means “handmade” in Tibetan. Lag Zo is a celebration of the incredible range, knowledge, and skill in traditional Tibetan craft, including thangka painting, silversmith, wood-carving, stone-carving, khyenle bronze casting, black pottery, and textile arts made from felted and woven yak wool. We are working with Tibetan artisans and partners in China to provide training workshops, product design and development support, one-on-one mentorship to artisan enterprise, and improved connection to both local and international markets.

Rigzin Program

The Smithsonian Rigzin program sponsors artists, musicians, and other tradition bearers to participate in an exchange with cultural heritage specialists in the United States and in online features. Rigzin is transliteration from Tibetan and refers to someone with knowledge of traditions. We believe everyone has the faculty and responsibility in safeguarding traditions for the well-being and wisdom of the next generation. Rigzin participants engage in activities designed to increase exposure to their work and provide them with knowledge and tools that they can bring back to their communities and use to build their careers and contribute to the sustainability of their communities’ cultural heritage.

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