The Golden Valley [Book]
The Untold Story of the Other Cultural Center of Tibet
|front cover < Preview Contents >|
Midwest Book Reviews [link to full review] the following is a exert from the review
Critique from Midwest Book reviews: Illustrated with full-color photography throughout, The Golden Valley: The Untold Story of The Other Cultural Center of Tibet is an exquisite tour of the art and cultural history of Tibet's Golden Valley region. Monastic art is not displayed in a vacuum; the text thoughtfully chronicles Tibet's rich and sometimes violent history, as well as the purpose and symbolism of works, and how they enriched daily life and prayers at Buddhist monasteries. As much an introduction to the faith, culture, and way of life of Golden Valley artists as it is a display of art, The Golden Valley is highly recommended for personal, public, and college library art history collections.
Dab of Darkness Book Reviews [link to full review] the following is a exert from the review
Critique from Dab of Darkness: Part history book, part art book, part documentary, this book is a real treasure trove on the Golden Valley of Tibet. I was very pleasantly surprised by how much was covered! There’s maps of the area, photos of the art, a written record of some of the oral histories of the place, and a beautiful section explaining numerous images used in Tibetan art. While I am a newbie to much of this, I felt this book is a good resource for both those new to Tibetan art and those who have a dedicated interest.
What I Liked: Lots of photographed examples of the various art; the explanations of the symbols/themes; maps!; a detailed history of the region; great cover!
What I Disliked: Nothing! It’s a great book on the region, suited to many audiences.
Kirkus Review [link to full review] the following is a exert from the review
This nonfiction debut illuminates the cultural heritage of the Golden Valley region in eastern Tibet, including its art, furniture, and rituals.
Huber and Glantz gather information available nowhere else; they set the record straight on matters such as what is or is not a reading desk; they get into the nitty-gritty of materials, techniques, and changing styles; and they provide a wealth of photographs documenting their study.
An invaluable resource for students of Tibetan Buddhist art, history, symbolism, and culture.
Our summary of what is in the book
We are offering the book in two different covers. We have a hardcover, which is stain and water resistant and also a paperback version that wears a laminated cover, thicker than the normal paperback to hold up to extended usage and wear. The paper stock is 80# paper, a premium quality paper.
The book is a chronicle of the geopolitical history and the art of the Golden Valley. Tracing the tumultuous history of the valley from the 7th century to the present day, a history sometimes triumphant but often atrociously tragic, provides the backdrop for the many influences on the evolution of its art, whether from enlightened Buddhist teachers or murderous invading armies.
Richly photographed, the book not only features the art itself – from exquisite centuries-old wall hangings to ingeniously designed furniture, all produced by dedicated monks – but also explains in unprecedented detail the symbolism and philosophy incorporated into these pieces, their stunning decorations serving a dual purpose as teaching devices.
Finally, the book introduces the reader to daily life at the monasteries. It delves into the everyday routines of the monks and nearby villagers, and the continued practice, even under today’s repressive conditions, of such ancient and profound rituals as the chanting of special mantras, sutras and pujas. These and other rites are explained in great detail, right down to the deep significance of the simple act of spinning a prayer wheel.
Taken together, the art showcased in this book is meant to guide the reader into the culture, mind and faith of the artists and their communities, and tell their previously untold story.
To preview selected pages of the book < PDF Preview >
The book is fully indexed, and contains 330 full color images and maps.
Size 8.5 x 11
It contains a chapter on Tibetan Buddhist symbols that goes into the genesis of the symbols and how they have changed over the centuries. One example is the section on the Eight Auspicious symbols, where we proved the originating translated scripture text: in that text one sees that there are nine symbols listed, yet the text states there are eight symbols. We delve into the different aspects of the symbols and their mutations over the centuries. It is concisely written and includes several symbols not listed in any other source, including Robert Beer's Encyclopedia of Tibetan Buddhist symbols. It is also the only book I have seen where the illustrations are in color and are from the actual art of Tibet, and not a recent artist's line drawing.
We also clear up some misconceptions about the furniture's identification and usage.
The hardcover, only available on this web site is $119.95. < click here > to purchase [it will be available on Amazon on the 30th of June]
The premium paperback, again only available on this web site is $79.95. < click here > to purchase
A lessor quality paperback version is available on Amazon.com for $65.95. The primary difference is the quality of the paper, 60# instead of the 80# and the thickness and lamination of the cover.