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Mystical Arts of Tibet – Sand Mandala Residency

September 13, 2016 - September 18, 2016


One of Savannah’s most popular art events, the Mystical Arts of Tibet returns as the Tibetan Monks of Drepung Loseling Monastery revisit the Jepson Center to create a sand mandala in the Eckburg Atrium during a weeklong residency. To date, the monks have created mandala sand paintings in more than 100 venues throughout the United States and Europe, and this year marks the 10th anniversary of the monks’ very first appearance at the Jepson Center!

Mandala_300Mandala is a Sanskrit word meaning “sacred cosmogram.” The mandala sand painting begins with an opening ceremony on Tuesday evening, during which the lamas consecrate the site through chanting, music, and mantra recitation, and draw the outline of the mandala. On the following days, they will lay down the colored sands, which this year will take the form of the Akshobya Mandala, also known as the “Unshakable Victor,” for conflict resolution and peace.

Visitors may watch the monks at work during normal museum hours in the Jepson Center Atrium on Wednesday through Saturday. On Sunday, the mandala will be destroyed—a metaphor for the impermanence of life. The sands are placed in an urn, with half of the sand distributed to the audience at the closing ceremony. The remainder will be carried to the Savannah River and dispersed to the ocean for planetary healing.

Funding is provided by the City of Savannah’s Department of Cultural Affairs.


Schedule (all events at Jepson Center)

Opening Ceremony
Tuesday, September 13, 5–7pm
Free and open to the public

The monks begin with a ceremony of music and chants, followed by the drawing of the mandala.


Mandala Sand Painting
September 14–17, 10am–5pm
Free admission to Jepson Center Atrium

Watch the monks at work! Visitors are welcome in the atrium for free during normal daytime museum hours.


Lecture: “Meditation: A Tool for Conscious Living” by the Tibetan Monks of Drepung Loseling
Thursday, September 15, 6pm
Free and open to the public

For the first time at the Jepson Center, the monks will present a lecture on meditation as an important technique for quieting the mind and establishing an inner basis of clarity and well-being. Meditation allows us to relax and better understand the processes that make up our lives. The monks will discuss meditative techniques aimed at strengthening important inner qualities and
eliminating inner negativities and habitual patterns.


Free Family Day
Saturday, September 17, 1–4pm
Free and open to the public

In conjunction with a visit by the Tibetan Monks of Drepung Loseling Monastery, enjoy child-friendly introductions to the culture of Tibet. Learn the geography, try butter tea, and make a meditation jar. Two sessions at 2pm and 3pm will give children the opportunity to contribute to a community sand mandala using the same tools as the monks!


Closing Ceremony: Chants, Destruction of the Mandala, and Procession to the River
Sunday, September 18, 2–3pm
Members free / non-members $5

In a moving closing event with music and polyphonic chants, the monks ritually destroy the mandala. Afterward, sand is distributed to the audience, and at 3pm, the public is invited to join the monks for a procession to the Savannah River to release the mandala to the ocean to spread healing throughout the world. Please note that this event is first come, first served.


September 13, 2016
September 18, 2016
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Jepson Center
207 W York St
Savannah, 31401 United States