Thangka Drawing & Painting Retreat in ITALY/ June 10-19, 2022 / Near Lake Garda

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A wonderful 10 day Thangka Drawing & Painting Retreat in Italy! June 10-19, 2022

All details of this retreat and the register button will be added soon


Vajrapani, Buddha of Infinite Power

In this wonderful 10-day thangka drawing & painting course in Italy you will learn to draw and color / paint Vajrapani, the Buddha of Infinite Power, according to the Tibetan-Buddhist thangka tradition, with the traditional coloring and thangka painting techniques.

Vajrapani has an active standing posture instead of the usual sitting meditation posture. In addition, he is deep blue in color, and the skin of a tiger has been wrapped around its waist, symbolizing its fearlessness.

Vajrapani’s hand gestures symbolize overcoming obstacles. He is adorned with jewels, but also with snakes, which he controls by the superior power of his compassion. He’s surrounded by flames of wisdom energy that come from all pores of his powerful body.

The Three Bodhisattvas
Vajrapani, together with Avalokiteshvara and Manjushri, form together the “Three Great Bodhisattvas,” which represent the three most important qualities –Compassion, Wisdom, and Power– that you need to develop if you want to make progress on the spiritual path.

Prefer to draw/paint Chenrezig or Manjushri?
As Vajrapani is more suitable for advance students, you may also choose to draw Chenrezig, the Buddha of Compassion, or Vajrapani, the Buddha of Wisdom instead. If you prefer this, after your registration please contact Carmen with your preferred Buddha so she can prepare this for you.

The course is suitable for everyone, from beginners (even without any drawing experience) to advanced. Thangka students may also choose to finish their other artwork during this course (and will of course receive these new grid proportions as well).

Buddha of Infin. Compassion

Buddha of Infinite Wisdom

Buddha of Infinite Power







 Check out the 2019 pictures of the Thangka Painting Retreat here

Advantages of a long thangka retreat:

  • In this 10-day painting course you can really go in-depth
  • Including all nights and delicious Italian meals, with organic vegetables from own compound, freshly prepared every day with love
  • Meet students from different countries and make new friends
  • The course is set in Kushi Ling, the most beautiful Buddhist Centre of Italy, amidst the mountains and olive trees
  • You can fly cheaply to Verona or Milan
  • You can travel together with Carmen from Verona, Peschiera or Riva del Garda on the first day
  • Great possibility to combine this retreat with vacation in Italy (e.g. to Lake Garda and Verona that are nearby)

You really don’t need any drawing or painting experience.
Carmen offers a lot of individual guidance, at your own level.

An international group of people comes together for this special thangka drawing and painting retreat in Northern Italy, close to beautiful Verona and the Garda LakThis annual course -that gives you the opportunity to really go in-depth- includes starting with a meditation in the morning and lectures & slides about the iconography and symbolism in Tibetan Buddhism. You will also have time to fully enjoy the beautiful surroundings of this place and their delicious Italian cuisine (vegetarian). The vegetables are produced organically on the compound.
Halfway during the retreat there will be an afternoon off so you can taste the best ice cream in the nearest village of Arco, visit the Garda lake, hike in the mountains or have a great walk to ‘Castello’, the medieval castle on top of the hill overlooking Arco.

English and Italian
The teachings are given in English, and when needed can be translated in Italian by one of the advanced Italian students.

Want to travel together with other participants?
In the morning on the first day of the retreat, Carmen and some other students will travel together to Kushi Ling by taking the beautiful boat trip (around 9.45 AM) from Peschiera (not far from Verona) to Riva del Garda, where we will have lunch together and share a 20min. taxi ride to Kushi Ling.
If you want to join in Verona / Peschiera / Riva del Garda please contact Carmen about it.


mandala-workshops“When I knew about the five elements mandala course I thought it would be an interesting and beautiful way of develop my knowledge about this subject.

My personal intention was to achieve more clearness in my mind.
I saw the mandala as a mirror of my own energy.
I feel this work as a very complete and clear meditation where we can observe the mind, the sight (seeing) and our hand (as expression). And the connection between them.

My experience show me that although the constantly waves of my mind (by them I couldn’t believe I could do just a complex and beautiful work), the mandala was growing surprising beautiful. And, in between,  I knew a lot of more things about me. I should be very proud!

Also I feel grateful to spend 9 days in Kushi Ling, this peaceful place between the mountains. With a great company of the group and with the guidance and wisdom of Carmen.

It was a very good experience, that I recommend very much.”

Maria José Moura, Porto, Portugal
Annual Thangka Painting Retreat in Italy

To read more testimonials and see artwork of thangka students, go to the Testimonial & Artwork page


More Info & Registration

Schedule & Price
Friday 10 June 2022: you can arrive at your own pace during the day and get settled in your room. In the evening we start at 19.00hr / 7pm with a welcome dinner for all the participants.
Sunday 19 June: the course ends after lunch (around 14.00hr / 2pm). 

€315 + 9 nights of lodging & all meals, and depending on the room type this will be between €34 and €68 per day (including three great meals a day, coffee, tea, biscuits and fruit). All prices include VAT.
Check here Kushi Ling’s Lodging & Food prices for 2021 (link to come).

Half Course

You will get the most out of the full thangka retreat, but if you are unable to come for 10 days we can make an exception and you can come for half the retreat, where you will only be able to draw a Buddha image (no time for coloring or painting):
– Friday 11 June at 7pm (dinner time) until Tuesday 15 June after lunch
– Wednesday 16 June 7pm (dinner time) until Sunday 20 June after lunch
Half course price € 175 + 4 nights lodging & all meals. All prices include VAT.

Materials to bring

You can choose if you want to draw & color (advised for beginner students) or paint (advised for advanced students):

To draw (advised for beginner students):

  • a minimum of 2 sheets of good quality drawing paper 50x65cm
  • a long ruler (for ex. 50cm)
  • a pencil HB (or mechanical pencil if you like)
  • an eraser
  • colored pencils of a good brand (such as Prismacolor Premier, Caran d’Ache Luminance or Faber Castell Polychromos)

To paint (for more advanced students):

  • the drawing materials above
  • in addition to this please bring all you need for painting, the List of Materials will be added soon. 

A  little more explanation on the different student levels:

• First time thangka students will also learn how to draw a Buddha face (always the basis), before moving on to drawing (and coloring) the subject mentioned.

• Beginners and half-experienced will learn to draw the image, as well as color or paint after that. After the drawing you can choose to color your Buddha and learn the color pencil techniques (advisable for total beginners and people who want to return home with a finished artwork), or make a start to paint her with the thangka painting techniques.

• Experienced thangka students may want to prepare a traditional canvas (contact Carmen beforehand for instructions) after which you can transfer your drawing onto the canvas and start painting the Buddha.

• This retreat can also be used to continue/finish other thangka artwork that you’ve been working on.
Of course you will receive the grids of the subject of this retreat, to draw/paint it in the future.

Besides the drawing/painting sessions in this course you will learn through lectures & slideshows all about the particular subject and symbolism, mantra and meaning, as well as practicing the accompanying meditations.

Center for Meditation Kushi-Ling, Arco (TN)
Alle Fontane, Laghel 19,
CP 118, I-38062,
Arco/Lago di Garda (TN)


How to get there?

Carmen will take option B, and you can join her (see below)

There are many different ways to get to Kushi Ling:
Kushi Ling is a gorgeous retreat center in between mountains and surrounded by olive trees. It’s about 15min. by car / 35min. on foot to the nearest village, the beautiful place of Arco.

The nearest airport is Verona, but you can also fly to Milan.
The trip to Kushi Ling offers great views and pittoresque villages, especially when traveling along the Garda Lake.
The following travel options are from Verona Airport, but you can use parts of it when coming from Milan or other directions:

A) Via Verona by bus & train
> Verona is a beautiful city (the city of Romeo & Juliet!) and well worth a stay. In the summer the famous open air operas are held in the historical city centre.
– Take the Aerobus (every 20min, in front of Verona Airport) to Verona Station (Verona Porta Nuova), price is €6
– Next take the train from Verona to Rovereto. The ‘treno regionale’ is the cheapest (around €8) and takes 50min. (don’t forget to stamp the ticket before you get onto the train).
– From Rovereto take a taxi to Kushi Ling
Take bus 332 or 301 to Arco (Autostazione) and take a taxi (or share with others) for the last part to Kushi Ling (max. €15). If you cannot find a taxi in Arco you can call Antonella: +39-333 5963033 or +39-0464 518983 or a different taxi service: +39-0464 – 514520.
Optional: You can also walk the last part from Arco but it’s steep/uphill -it’s a great walk but might not be handy with luggage- which will take about one hour.

The taxi drivers most probably know Centro di Meditazione Kushi Ling. If not, let him/her read this:
Dal centro cittá prendere la strada (a destra) verso Laghel. Arrivati alla chiesa Santa Maria di Laghel si prende la salita a sinistra e si segue tutta la strada (circa 3 km) fino alle Fontane: è l’ultima casa.

B) By boat over the Garda Lake (recommended!)
> The Garda Lake is one of Italy’s most popular places to visit, and great to combine as vacation with this thangka painting retreat. ‘Lago di Garda’ offers great views, mountains, and small villages full of colorful houses.

– From Verona Airport take a taxi or bus 164 (in front of the airport) to Peschiera del Garda. The bus goes once an hour.
Peschiera is a lovely village at the bottom of the Garda Lake and from there you can take the once-a-day slow boat (4hr, only €16) to Riva del Garda, which is all the way to the top of the lake. The trip is a vacation in itself, with amazing views and short stops at pittoresque villages.
Optional: take the boat from Garda (some stops further on the bus) to Riva del Garda
– From Riva (del Garda) take a bus to Arco (read further at A) or take/share a taxi (max. €10 per person) to Kushi Ling.

C) By bus along the Garda Lake
– From Verona Airport take bus 164 (in front of the airport, every hour) to Garda (lovely village along the lake)
– From Garda take bus No.184 to Riva del Garda (another lovely village at the top of the lake)
– From Riva del Garda take a bus to Arco (see A) or taxi to Kushi Ling (see B)

D) By taxi
From Verona Airport you can book a taxi to Kushi Ling (that you could share with other thangka students). It takes about 1,5hr. to get there.

E) Rent a car
Especially handy when you want to combine the thangka painting course with vacation in Italy.


If you need help with your planning or want to travel together with other participants you can contact Carmen.
When all participants leave after the thangka painting course, you can probably travel back with others or get a ride to a train or bus station.

Please register with Kushi Ling a.s.a.p. when registration opens to avoid disappointment as the course may be full or the rooms of your desire may be taken.

You can register by sending an email to Kushi Ling: info(at) (English or Italian), making a phone call: (+39) 347-2113471 (English or Italian), or by filling in this form:

>>Check out the 2019 Thangka Painting Retreat Italy pictures<<