Tenzing Rigdol Awarded Honorary Doctorate by CU DenverAlice Crogan | College of Arts & Media Apr 29, 2022
The University of Colorado Board of Regents will award Tenzing Rigdol an Honorary Doctorate degree on May 3, 2022. Rigdol, one of the world’s most prolific contemporary Tibetan artists, is an alumnus of University of Colorado Denver’s College of Arts & Media (CAM).
Rigdol, a 2005 visual arts graduate, is the first Tibetan artist whose work has been acquired by the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s (MET) permanent collection. In 2011, Rigdol’s site specific installation in India, titled “Our Land, Our People”, earned him international notice as a visionary artist-activist. Through an arduous journey, Rigdol transported 20,000 kg of Tibetan soil, blessed by the Dali Lama to India, allowing Tibetan refugees to walk to on the earth of their homeland.
In 2019, Rigdol returned to the CU Denver campus for his first US solo exhibition, “My World Is in Your Blind Spot” at CAM’s Emmanuel Art Gallery. The title was shared with his series of Buddhas created from textiles, scripture, and photographs. CAM joins the Emmanuel Art Gallery in commemorating and celebrating Rigdol’s honorary doctorate degree and his growing living legacy.
"CAM is proud the CU Board of Regents selected a CAM alum whose life trajectory reflects the three values of the College of Arts & Media—creative excellence ,discovery and Denver, the city embraced him and his family," says Laurence Kaptain, CAM dean. "Thank you to Tenzing Rigdol for demonstrating the essential linkages that illuminate the pathways of both courage and consciousness."
On May 4th the Emmanuel Art Gallery will host an in-person panel discussion with Rigdol and specials guests Kurt Behrendt, MET associate curator; Sarah Magnatta, curator of Rigdol’s 2019 solo exhibition and University of Denver art history professor; and Yang Wang CU Denver art history professor. The discussion is free and open to the public. More information is found here. The panel will be followed by a private dinner at the home of the late Emmy Bunker, ardent supporter of Rigdol whose generosity made possible the international transport of art for his solo exhibition.
Rigdol is represented internationally by Rossi & Rossi, leading pioneer of Asian art representation, engaging with major collectors, museums, and institutions worldwide. Rigdol uses the sale of his works to support Tibetan artists, poets, writers through his collective located in Dharmshala, India.