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Rubin Museum debuts new exhibit, “Healing Practices: Stories from Himalayan Americans”



The new exhibition highlights “how Tibetan Buddhist art practices serve as roadmaps to well-being in times of crisis.”

Hua Khar Jaintsa (active 1990s), “Course of the Lifespan Principle (chapter 4 cont.)” (1995–96), Rebgong, Amdo Province, Northeastern Tibet (Tongren, Qinghai Province, China); pigments on cloth (Rubin Museum of Art, gift of Shelley and Donald Rubin Private Collection, C2014.9.12)

The Rubin Museum of Art in New York City opened their new exhibit, Healing Practices: Stories from Himalayan Americans on March 18, 2022. The exhibit, opening two years after the start of the global COVID-19 pandemic, highlights various healing practices in Tibetan Buddhism that are used to achieve balanced spiritual, physical and emotional well-being.

The exhibit features 25 objects from the Rubin Museum’s collection set, alongside personal stories and experiences from Himalayan Americans in the form of audio recordings. The art covers a variety of traditional and contemporary Himalayan practices and central healing figures, including rituals, exercises, prayers, meditation, and medicinal treatments.

In a press release from the museum, Michelle Bennett-Simorella, Director of Curatorial Administration and Collections and organizer of the exhibition said, “Healing is about confronting and transforming suffering and rebalancing the mind and body to equilibrium. It can be, at times, a seemingly unsurmountable process during which we gain a better understanding of ourselves, others, and the world around us. This exhibition explores what the practices of healing in Tibetan Buddhism have to offer to individuals and society as well as the meaningful ways people move forward after a collective experience of trauma.”

The Rubin developed Healing Practices in collaboration with a Himalayan American and Asian American Community Advisory Group, which includes “New York tristate area and DC artists, medical professionals, spiritual leaders, activists, educators, and art therapists interested in the intersection between art, healing, and activism.” The exhibit will run until January 16, 2023.


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