National Institute for Zorig Chusum (Painting School)

The National Institute for Zorig Chusum, commonly referred to as the Painting School, is a prestigious educational institution in Bhutan dedicated to preserving and promoting traditional arts and crafts. Here are some details and facts about the National Institute for Zorig Chusum:

  1. Location: The institute is located in Thimphu, the capital city of Bhutan. It is situated in the northern part of the city, near the Dechencholing Palace.
  2. Establishment: The National Institute for Zorig Chusum was established in 1971 by the Royal Government of Bhutan under the patronage of the Queen Mother, Ashi Phuntsho Choden. Its primary objective is to preserve and promote the thirteen traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan, collectively known as “Zorig Chusum.”
  3. Curriculum: The institute offers a comprehensive curriculum that covers a wide range of traditional Bhutanese arts and crafts, including painting, sculpture, wood carving, weaving, embroidery, metalwork, and ceramics. Students undergo rigorous training under the guidance of master craftsmen and instructors, learning both theoretical knowledge and practical skills.
  4. Programs: The institute offers various programs and courses tailored to different skill levels and interests. These include short-term workshops for beginners, diploma courses for intermediate students, and advanced training for aspiring master craftsmen. The duration of the programs varies from a few months to several years.
  5. Facilities: The National Institute for Zorig Chusum is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and workshops where students can practice and hone their craft. These include specialized studios for painting, sculpture, weaving, and other disciplines, as well as libraries, exhibition spaces, and lecture halls.
  6. Cultural Preservation: By imparting traditional skills and knowledge to future generations, the institute plays a crucial role in preserving Bhutan’s unique cultural heritage. The skills learned at the institute are not only valuable for artistic expression but also for maintaining Bhutan’s distinct cultural identity in the face of modernization and globalization.
  7. Contributions to Society: Graduates of the National Institute for Zorig Chusum go on to become skilled artisans, craftsmen, and artists who contribute to various sectors of Bhutanese society. They produce exquisite works of art, handicrafts, and religious objects that are highly prized both locally and internationally.
  8. Tourism and Cultural Exchange: The institute also serves as a popular tourist attraction, welcoming visitors who are interested in learning about Bhutanese arts and crafts. Tourists can visit the workshops, observe students at work, and purchase authentic handicrafts and artworks produced by the institute’s graduates.

The National Institute for Zorig Chusum plays a vital role in preserving Bhutan’s rich cultural heritage and promoting the continuation of traditional arts and crafts for future generations. Through its educational programs, the institute ensures that these invaluable skills and traditions are passed down and cherished for years to come.