In my childhood I was allowed to be quite wild growing up in the countryside which I cherish my memories of riding horses. I have always been in love with horses and they have had a place in my art as long as I can remember.


We lived in a community with no electricity on the mountains of Brazil where I was born. Later, we moved to a sailing boat at the sea and when I was by my 16 years old I did went on my first solo travel to Australia, spending a few months at an aboriginal tribe at the desert.

Less then two years later, I joined again my parents for a life changing pilgrimage. We left Germany by car, crossing all of Russia into the heart of Mongolia. In the country of horses, was where I was stroked by the impact of Tibetan Buddhist sacred arts. I will never forget when a Buddhist monk there came close to me, and spoke with his broken English with such a determination, “you will be a sacred art painter”, smiled and left. After this encounter, I had no doubt that this would become my life’s calling.

I decided to move to India and dedicate myself to this path. But before i was able to follow my life's call, i went back to Germany to work and ended up enrolling in german and graphic design studies feeling my dream was still pulsating each day stronger. 


Three years passed in Germany, when I finally made it to India and was accepted as the first westerner at the Norbulingka Institute of Tibetan Arts in Dharmsala, at the foothills of the Himalayas. I lived and studied there for three wonderful years, even so learning with a Tibetan teacher who spoke only Tibetan and who did not utter my name for the first year. He trained me by polishing my ego, my determination, patience and vision. I drew the same deities for months, again and again. Actually the first word in Tibetan I learned in school was “again!”. This experience from learning with my Tibetan teacher, I wrote a book entitled “Life and Thangka” available in kindle.

In 2006 when I was about to leave India and enter a conventional art university in Europe, my Tibetan partner and I found out we were expecting a child! A total change of plans! I came back to live Brazil with my parents. I had lots of doubts and insecurity at that time. All I knew was to paint Buddhas and I had a little baby boy. But as some say, “children come with their karma”, shortly after the birth of my son I was invited into a long term project of painting at a traditional Tibetan temple in south Brazil. I accepted this five year commitment with both joy and fear. 

Being a mother and being committed with so many things, made my wild and free sense of identity crumble like a sand castle, falling to the ground grain by grain. What happens when we do not know who we are anymore? The distorted feelings become actions, which leads to strained situations and then dense reality. This time in my life was hard, mainly dealing with my own heart and mind stuck in dark corners.


This is when I started to paint again based on my own emotions and ideas, which sacred arts do not allow it to be expressed. As it is an art not focused in human dramas, but on the enlighten mind.

I was creating both – I felt it was a perfect balance between being sincere about my inner world and shadows and being faithful to a discipline where I gained wisdom to drive thru the inner world.

I can say that the years in the swamp of my heart, was the real base where the lotus seeds started to grow and I could present the fruits of my own efforts.

Some years back I also dedicated myself into the studies of sacred

geometry doing a few workshops at the Price School in London. I really enjoy teaching sacred arts and also teaching about the creative process. 


Later I included the presence of horses on my workshops to enrich and open doors for the creative process.  One of my teachers, Alok, is a Chinese Zen painter, who always reminds me to relax into not-knowing and allow my creativity to come out of that space. This process of realizing how important is to be aware of the changing qualities of energy in my body and how related it was with what i thought, i was inspired to use more my own body as a laboratory which led to my dance and meditation teachers, Yumma Mudra and Michel Raji living in Belgium. Since then, i have combined my working progress and the workshops and retreats i offer, with body awareness provocations, motivation and authentic expression.  


I lead art retreats in India each year where the sacred arts are explored and embodied, with my co-founders of the Mystic Art Retreats. 

My life partner and I have built an art studio on the same mountains where I grew up. It’s called Atelier YabYum, a place in nature open for art retreats - traditional and contemporary art, dance or painting. The arts I invoke in my space are dedicated to opening one’s heart and live in consciousness awareness, love and inner freedom.


- May 2019, "DOMA", solo show at Galeria Indigo, Bragança, SP, Brazil.

- October 2015, "Sublime Worlds", duo show, Tibet House Gallery, New York, USA.

- August 2015, "Onde Anda a Onda", group exhibition at the National Museum, Brasilia, DF, Brazil.

- November 2014, "Mundos Suspensos", solo exhibition at Materia Plastica gallery, Brasilia, DF, Brazil.

- April 2014, "Inactu" group exhibition at the UNB gallery, Brasilia.

- Junho 2012, "Mystic Nostalgia", solo exhibition, Tibet House Gallery, New York, USA.

- February 2010, "ENTRElaçados", solo exhibition at Saiko, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil.

- December 2009, "Um Outro Olhar", group exhibition, Shopping Bourbon Country, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil. 

The Artist

© 2015 Tiffani Gyatso

Tiffani Gyatso

Atelier YabYum

Extrema, MG


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