Sonam Dolma

Studio Building
Studio Interior
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Studio Location
My Father's Death, 49 monk's dresses and stupas, 100 x 100 x 40 cm
Red Carpet, wood and plaster stupas, 245 cm (diameter)
Tower of Babel, plaster and wood, 47 x 95 cm
Tower of Babel (detail)
untitled, 102 x 76 cm
Artist's Statement

I mainly used to paint, later I was also making clay figures and more recently I make installations in order to be able to express themes that preoccupy me for quite some time: on one side the machoism and its relation to power, money and war, on the other side the political situation in my country Tibet.
As a Tibetan making art I face two obstacles: First I am one of the few contemporary Tibetan artists who is not using primarily ‘ethnic’ Tibetan symbols and secondly I am a woman… Most of my Tibetan artist colleagues are referring to central Tibetan Buddhist symbols (like Buddhas or mandalas) or to more folkloristic themes, whereas I am less interested in these single symbols or representations but want to explore more general themes. Those might have something to do with the culture I am coming from but do not necessarily relate to it.


Born about 1953
The first six years of my life I was living high up in the Tibetan ‚Alps’ in Kongpo.
1960 I flew with my family to India, where I lost my father and my sister. In the beginning of our stay in India we were working in road construction, then we were living in Shimla and Dehradun, where I went to an ‚English Medium School’.
When I was 19 years old I moved to Switzerland, and married a Swiss anthropologist. We have two children: daughter Yangzom (actress and author) and Tashi (teacher and prospective artist).

From 1990 onwards I attended art classes at the Art School in Bern with Arthur Freuler, Leopold Schropp, Serge Fausto Sommer und Mariann Bissegger.