Tov Aimag ~ Mongolia
Artist and teacher the Venerable Purevbat is the founder of the Zanabazar Mongolian Institute of Buddhist Art. He received his Prince Claus Award for the uncompromising authenticity of his methods and techniques, for revitalising an important, “non-modern” art form, for his dedication to future generations and for cherishing local identity through traditional art and culture. Venerable Purevbat is an outstanding artist and teacher of the Vajrayana Buddhist tradition. After graduating in art, Purevbat began specialised study of Buddhist aesthetics, travelling to India and Nepal to research iconography and iconometry. His scholarly discipline ensures conformity to essential rules but he is also a great innovator, adding modern influences and practices, creating a distinctive style and a dynamic art form. Committed to reviving the traditions of Buddhism that had been virtually wiped out in Mongolia, Purevbat founded a school to train artists and teachers in disciplines such as painting, sculpting, appliqué, architecture and dance. He established the Zanabazar Mongolian Institute of Buddhist Art, which mounts exhibitions, documents historical sites, and undertakes restoration projects and the re-introduction of festivals. He initiated a masters course for graduates, speaks on radio and television, and is writing a 23-volume series on Buddhist art theories and techniques. Purevbat’s fine artworks, inspirational activities and dissemination of knowledge have created a renaissance in Mongolian cultural identity and timely self-affirmation. Artist and scholar, Venerable Purevbat is honoured for the rigorous authenticity of his methods and techniques, for re-establishing an important ‘un-modern’ aesthetic practice, for his dedication and generosity in fostering future generations, and for nurturing local identity through artistic tradition and culture.