News

“Dividers″ Upcoming New Drawing & Paintings Art Exhibition @ Pirate Contemporary Art Gallery

Please join me at the opening reception of my upcoming 2016 solo art exhibition – “Dividers” – at Pirate Contemporary Art Gallery in Denver, Colorado Friday July 22, 2016 from 6-10pm. My exhibition this year will feature new drawings and paintings.

Exhibition info:
Pirate Contemporary Art Gallery
3655 Navajo Street
Denver, CO 80211

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“Relics of Mongolia″ Upcoming New Paintings & Installation Art Exhibition @ Pirate Contemporary Art Gallery

Please join me at the opening reception of my upcoming 2015 solo art exhibition – “Relics of Mongolia” – at Pirate Contemporary Art Gallery in Denver, Colorado Friday, July 31st, 2015 from 6-10pm. My exhibition this year will feature new paintings and installation art. Also, thanks greatly to my show sponsor – Denver’s Bd’s Mongolian Grill!

Exhibition info:
Pirate Contemporary Art Gallery
3655 Navajo Street
Denver, CO 80211

"Relics of Mongolia" postcard front

"Relics of Mongolia" postcard back

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Juried International Exhibition – NordArt 2015 in Büdelsdorf, Germany

I am pleased to announce that three of my large scale paintings have been selected to display in the”Mongolian Pavillion” of the 2015 NordArt International Juried Contemporary Art Exhibition at the Kunstwerk Carlshütte Museum in Büdelsdorf, Germany.  The country of focus for NordArt 2015 is Mongolia with curators Oyuntuya Oyunjargal, Bodibaatar Jigjidsuren who have been integral in piecing this exhibition together. The exhibition runs from June 6th to October 4th 2015.

(Exhibition Artist Bio + NordArt Flyer)

nordart2015-plakat-doppelt

NordArt 2015

Opening Ceremony: 6. June at 5 pm
in the sculpture park in front of the ACO Wagenremise
Entrance in the Park at 4 pm
Entrance in the exhibition halls at 6 pmOpening times till 4. October 2015:
Tuesday – Sunday, 11 am – 7 pm
Info: +49 (0) 4331 – 354 695

About NordArt:

We are pleased to announce that 2932 artists from 99 countries have applied for the NordArt 2015. We would like to thank all artists for the very good response this year.
The jury of the NordArt selected 250 artists from 50 countries for this year’s exhibition.

Since 1999 the NordArt has established itself as one of the largest exhibitions of contemporary art in Europe which takes place anually in the summer months. The NordArt is an overall work of art in its own right and is designed as such each year. More than 200 international artists, selected by a jury, present a comprehensive panorama of contemporary art

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Bizarre Foods Denver episode Airs

Bizarre Foods: Denver episode has aired on February 18, 2013.

Link to video: http://www.travelchannel.com/video/denvers-mongolian-cuisine

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Bizarre Foods America with Andrew Zimmern

Recently my family and I were featured on an upcoming episode (airing next year) of Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods America with Andrew Zimmern. The episode focused on the diverse cultures and foods of Denver, Colorado, with our family representing for the Colorado Mongolian community. We built a traditional ger with some of my Tsam masks inside outside my house as my wife, children and friends cooked a marvelous authentic Mongolian style sheep feast for Andrew.

Here is further reading about Andrew’s visit to Denver.

Clippings from Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods America with Andrew Zimmern:

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“Nomadic Spirits 2” Upcoming New Exhibition @ Pirate


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Creation process of “Maitreya” Thangka for his Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama

I had the privilege to create another large scale Thangka for His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama who will be arriving to Bloomington, Indiana to visit the Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center on May 11, 2010. For the Thangka, I chose to create a rare Diety called Maitreya (Tibetan: Jampa) symbolizing the future Buddha within and without everyone, who is expected to come to earth from Tushita Heaven. He is a Bodhisattva whose devotion spans both Theravedic (Hinayana) and Mahayana countries. He is supposed to reappear on earth in human form, for the deliverance of all sentient beings to enlightenment by revealing that which time and ignorance have covered. He will be the last of the five Buddhas to gain supreme enlightenment in this aeon. He holds the stock of a lotus in his right hand and is either represented standing or sitting.

I was delighted to get an opportunity to create another Thangka for His Holiness. The Maitreya’s teachings wish all sentient beings to rid loose of doubts, and the torrents of cravings, free from all misery crossing the ocean of becoming and as a result leading a holy life of oneness. The finished Thangka came out wonderful which was then beautifully embroidered by my wife Baja.

In the following days, I accompanied my Dharma Wheel class, led by our teacher Lama Tetum and headed to Bloomington, Indiana by car from Denver, Colorado. Upon arrival to Bloomington we took up to a nearby accommodation and toured the Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center along with the newly constructed prayer wheel pavilion. The next day, in preparation for the arrival of His Holiness and for the opportunity to gift the Maitreya Thangka, I was dressed in the traditional Buddhist Lama robe attire and was given a special Lama pass. Incredibly I did not realize that the pass would later allow me to sit with the monks just yards away from His Holiness at the welcoming conference. And just as His Holiness arrived at the Culture Center, I had a brief moment to gift him the Thangka on his way inside. I was very fortunate and grateful to all the people and Lamas that made possible such a great opportunity.

Below are a few of the pictures from the Maitreya Thangka creation process:


You can also go to my exhibitions page to see more picture from the day.

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The History of the “Tulga” Public Sculpture in Denver

The Tulga sculpture has been one of the biggest accomplishment in my career as an artist. Its amazing to experience the flowering of what was once an an abstract idea to what is now built, and in its physical presence, a towering 20 foot x 7’6″ stainless steel sculpture of a stylized Tulga (Mongolian for fireplace) that stand on a hill in the City of Ulaanbaatar Park of Denver, Colorado. The sculpture project undertaking was of a grand scale to say the least, spanning five years of joint efforts, dedication and hard work. There are many people who I list below that have helped make my idea come alive, but the most important support came from my family and my fellow ‘Tulga’ group whom I genuinely thank. Seeing that the Tulga sculpture opening ceremony will be coming up on May 24th 2009, I thought it would be a tremendous idea to chronicle the history of how the sculpture came to life.

The city of Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia and Denver have been sister cities for five years in 2004. In recognition of this long held bond, the city of Denver has distilled their wonderful legacy and the Lowry district of Colorado has named their public park, “City of Ulaanbaatar Park”. This was perfect timing as the much anticipated “800 years of Mongolia’s statehood celebration” frenzy started up in 2005. In January of that year, the Colorado Mongolian Community Association (MCAC) held an important board meeting, and being a MCAC member, I suggested an idea of creating some type of a memorabilia both in recognition of the Mongolian culture at the City of Ulaanbaatar Park and Mongolia’s 800 year statehood celebration. I received positive feedback which marked the beginning of my journey to finding the identity and form of the Mongolian “Tulga” symbol into a sculpture.

Coming up with the concept of The Tulga sculpture was an important endeavor for me being that it was the first permanent public sculpture designed and built by a Mongolian artist in America. In the Mongolian culture, the Tulga is an open fireplace representing the spirit of the most esteemed piece of the nomad household. But the legacy of the Tulga spreads beyond just the project itself, establishing a rather deep rooted symbolic footing for the ethnic identity and migration of Mongolians that reside in America.

If we contrast America’s landscape as the inner structure of the mongol ger, Denver-Colorado positions at the center mimicking exactly where the Tulga (fireplace) takes place inside the traditional structure of a ger (Mongolian tent like house). I also took into account the symbolic reference of the Tulga being located in Colorado as referencing a greater emotional importance to all Mongolians in America. Colorado signifies the first state to which the first Mongolian immigrants called home, and just as we would when we build a new ger, we center the Tulga, start the fire, give birth to and raise our children, learn, grow, and educate, work hard for a chance at a better life, and most importantly, leaving the Tulga flames sparking for future generation to keep lit.

In addition to being a symbol of warmth and comfort, the Tulga Sculpture represents the spirit of the home. The three rings represent the sun, the moon, and the stars. The top of the four legs are sculpted to imitate a birds head,  the birds which protect the fire. For the base mount of the sculpture, I decided to incorporate/engrave the symbol of the endless knot pattern in the center of the circular base platform, which represent infinity and eternal bliss, foreboding an eternity of good omen for our children and the people who visit the park. The specific positioning of the sculpture also equate the Tulga in alignment with the earth, as each of its four legs are an alignment to the four cardinal directions.

The symbolic motivation and meaning behind the Tulga sculpture was of great significance but in order to gain official approval of the sculpture proposal, I introduced my idea to the board of the Ulaanbaatar – Denver Sister Cities International and gained full support. In 2006, the Colorado Mongolian Community Association granted also officially granted my proposal, and created the ‘Tulga’ group consisting of Naranzul ( 2006 MCAC president), Zolzaya (2006 MCAC vise president), and myself as the author of the sculpture. And with an equipped team, we early started the proposal initiation.

The Mongolians in Denver became the first to contribute to the project fundraising efforts, donating an estimated $2,084. In the following two years from 2007-2009, our Tulga group furiously went about the projects expansive financial undertaking; assembling paper works, vying for project approval from various official organizations of the city, receiving contracts and doing the utmost to raise funding. But even after our yearly efforts, we lacked in funds so as of May 2007, we proposed the project to members of the Mongolian Parliament. We hopes to gain support from Mongolia but in the long run, out proposal was not granted. In our final funding attempts, we looked to the members of the Lowry Community with an introductory video that explained the Mongolian culture, lifestyle and traditions. We were happy to find that the Lowry community responded in great support to the project, agreeing to provide us with the remaining funds with an even further request to increase the height of the sculpture to 20 feet which was two times its original length. We happily obliged to this request. And with its new alteration, the Tulga sculpture was officially noted as a landmark achievement for its size, design, and idea as the first public art statue created by a Mongolian artist in America.

Throughout the span of the project, I contributed a great amount of my own funds but I also wanted to acknowledge and thank the numerous other people who made the Tulga sculpture a possible feat. Generous contributions were made by the Kohn Family Foundation, Lowry Foundation, Wagner Asia, Fognani & Faught Company, Richard Hoffman, Jim & Mary Lee, Marilee Hegarty, Ward & Kary Polzan, Mayfair Park Community, Anita Hinsdale, and all the Mongolians, with special thanks to the Mongolians in Seattle, who have donated to the project. Below is an allocation summary of the funds according to the individuals and companies I’ve listed above:

85% of funds were received from outside organizations, companies, and fundraising efforts
10% of funds were received from Mongolian communities
5% of funds were received from outside communities

Here are a few of the pictures that document the creation process of the Tulga Sculpture during different phases, years, and seasons:


(All pictures and content in this post are © 2004-2009 Tsogtsaikhan Mijid and cannot be used for commercial purposes. If you are interested in using any photographs and or text, please send your request here)

You can also go to my exhibitions page to see pictures from the Opening Ceremony on May 24 2009.

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My art book in the making

Recently, my daughter Eriko gifted me with an art book. After years of anticipation, I was happy to receive a gift of such extent seeing that I’ve always planned on having one done. The book was independently published, designed and written with an interesting introductory essay by my daughter chronicling my life and art career from her critical perspective as an artist in coincidence with the political evolution of Mongolia.

I’ve posted some pictures of the book contents below for your interest. I see this book as a first step in a long process, but its off to a good start. I plan to continue my book journey and ultimately acquire sponsorship and professional publishing in the next few years.

If you are interested in purchasing a copy of Tsogtsaikhan Mijid: A Look Into Contemporary Mongolian Art, please email your request to tsogo_baja@yahoo.com or fill out a contact sheet here.

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Creation process of “Amatyus” Thangka for his Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama

I am excited to have embarked on an exciting artistic and spiritual endeavor as of recent. His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama was scheduled to arrive in Denver for the PeaceJam conference a couple weeks ago followed by a special appearance and talk at the University of Denver for the Mongolian and Tibetan communities that reside in Colorado. The event was a joint venture hosted by the Colorado Mongolian Association of Colorado and Tibetan Association of Colorado. Of course this became big news for my Dharma Wheel Buddhist class and the many religiously devout Buddhist Mongolians of Colorado. In conjunction to the event, my request of gifting a specially drafted Thangka to His Holiness on behalf of the Colorado Mongolian community was generously accepted by the organizations involved and so began my creation of the “Amatyus” Thangka.

The Thangka painting process consisted of a few weeks since I was on a very limited time frame before the arrival of His Holiness. For the Thagka, I chose to create the Amatyus Diety (Tibetan: Tsepagme), known as the Buddha of limitless life. Amitayus is the reflexive form of Amitaba and is the embodiment of infinite life and therefore the focus of the life practices that remove the possibility of untimely or premature death. He brings about a healing of sicknesses, degeneration and imbalances in the five elements of the body due to karma, excess and unclean living. He is often red but sometimes white in color. His two hands rest in his lap in the mudra of equanimity with the palms facing each other holding the Vase of Life, that is filled with the nectar of immortality.

Traditionally, the Thangka painting process consists of discipline and grueling labor, a practice that is very significant to my life and spiritual beliefs. Thus I was extremely honored and blessed to dedicate myself to creating the Amatyus Thangka wishing His Holiness and all sentient beings health and longevity. The finished Thangka came out wonderful which was then beautifully embroidered by my wife Baja.

On the morning of September 17th, His Holiness arrived at the University of Denver while a large crowd of Mongolians and Tibetans gathered outside. After everyone was seated inside, I had the honor of gifting the Amatyus Thangka to His Holiness The Dalai Lama on stage and in person. To my dismay, The Dalai Lama graciously accepted the painting as he kneeled forward in prayer stance to bless the Thangka. It was truly an incredible and indescribably moment that I will cherish with me forever.

Below are a few of the pictures from the Amatyus Thangka creation process:


You can also go to my exhibitions page to see a picture of me gifting the Thangka to His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

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