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February 2010

Tibetan Danger Dogs!

In honor of the Tibetan New Year of Lhosar, today I feature Tibetan Danger Dogs.   Losar, as it is sometimes spelled, is celebrated for 15 days in Tibet.   Lots of gambling, eating, partying and not much else gets done, especially in the first 3 days.


Kali is a Tibetan Mastiff, here painted by Santosh.   Kali is the goddess associated with eternal energy.   Available.

Kali's portrait by Sufraj Khadka seems to be pulsing with that same eternal energy. Available.

Gubby, as depicted here by Nara of Asha Arts, is not a Tibetan dog per se (I believe him to be a pitt bull) but Nara saw him as a Tibetan Danger Dog!   Of course, he was supposed to do the lettering in Tibetan script instead of Nepali, but I was charmed with this one.   This portrait of Gubby was sold at the Venice Art Walk last year benefiting the Venice Free Clinic.   

I'm proud to announce that the Nepal Art Project will be donating to the silent auction again this year to benefit the Venice Free Clinic.    The auction and Art Walk will take place on May 22 and 23, 2010.

The Nepal Art Dog project is dedicated to helping endangered signboard artists in Nepal by commissioning Fair Trade Art portraits of pets.  

Micro-finance through art patronage.   Give a rod not a fish.  

Contact me at for more information or to answer any questions.   My website is and you can see available works on the Nepal Dog Channel of YouTube.  

Danger Dogs as Odalisques.


I was inspired at the Renoir exhibit at LACMA the other day by the number of lovely nudes languishing on couches.   These are not Renoirs, but they are odalisques!   Here we have Fern, the Jack Russell Terrier, as she lounges on a red couch.

If you look closely in the background of this portrait of Layla, a white shepherd, you will see some images of ladies.   I'm not sure why Sagar chose to paint Layla with her background of lightly clad women, but there it is.   This one reminds me of a James Bond opening credit sequence.   

Shree of Pokhara paints FloJo the Italian Greyhound on her multi-colored couch.  

Star the Italian Greyhound lounges on his turquoise lawn chair.  By Sabala.

Millie Vartan, a Chocolate Lab, is painted by Amar Shrestha.   Millie looks so calm and tranquil on her blanket.

Annie and Pitzel make a pair of Odalisques in this portrait by Sabala.   They are a Pomeranian and a Papillion who know how to lay back and enjoy their life.    2008_293
Jean-Claude the Cat sleeps on his couch.   As painted by Amar Shrestha.   I often give sleeping pets to Amar to paint.   He seems to capture their total relaxation.  

Nepal Art Dogs is a Fair Trade Art project that is dedicated to preserving and promoting Nepali signboard art. 

You can help!

Micro-finance through art patronage!


Each commissioned piece receives a choice of 3 portraits of their pet, by 3 different artists.   That way -- one is sure to please, 3 artists get work, and the extras are sold in museums as Folk Art.    Satisfaction is guaranteed.   I don’t accept money until after the customer chooses a portrait.   No bad karma here!    The art is synthetic enamel on recycled metal, about a square foot in size.   The price for your choice of 3 portraits by these artists is $250 for a single pet.

Please contact me at for more information,  and check out the Nepal Dog website at

If you would like me to feature a particular breed, please write and let me know.


Spaniels from Nepal Art Dogs - Which would you choose?


Chip the Spaniel with his colorful background by Sanjib Rana of Kathmandu.   Danger Dog indeed!!!

Chip the Spaniel, this time painted by ShaShi from the same photo as the first portrait.


A final Chip as painted by Nabin.   The 3 portraits of the Spaniel Chip are all still available at $150 each.

This was the painting of Chip that Chip's owner chose.    By Hari Prasad.   I think she made the right choice.   I love the graphic lines in the background.  

The interesting part of this Fair Trade Art project is that you get to see the wide diversity of talent in the various signboard artists throughout Nepal.   Most of the time, I give 3 artists the same photo of the pet.   When working with a new artist, they will often ask about how much of the pet to include in the portrait, or what color background to use.   I always reply: "You are the artist, you decide."

The art of signboards is disappearing in Nepal, being replaced by mass-produced signage.   

Nepal Art Dogs commissions portraits of pets.   Each commission generates 3 paintings on recycled metal by 3 different artists, giving 3 artists paid work and the patron who commissions the work will get a minimum of 3 portraits from which to choose.   I do not accept any money up front.   If you do not like any of the 3, you pay nothing.   The artists get paid in any case.

Micro-finance through art patronage.

Please help support the Nepali artists.     Contact me at for more details and to answer any questions.   These artists' work is disappearing at an alarming rate.   When was the last time you saw a hand-painted sign where you live?   Don't let that happen in Nepal.  

You can also go to my website at for more examples of the Danger Dog Art Project.  

Ferret Art from Nepal

Ferrets, though I am not sure they exist in Nepal, make a great signboard.

Clooney the Ferret as painted by Sagar in Kathmandu.   This cute ferret caused some consternation among the artists because they didn't know what to write in Nepali.   Who knows what they ended up with as a translation.

Clooney the Ferocious Ferret by Sabala.

Amar Shrestha from Boudha painted Clooney on the cobblestones.

Lastly, we have Clooney the Ferret as painted by Hari Prasad.  

Clooney in person.

As you can see, these artists can paint any type of pet from Afghans to Zimbabwe Zipperbacks!  

These artists are losing work to digital mass-produced signage.   Traditionally painted on recycled metal, using synthetic enamel, these paintings are meant to be hung out of doors.

By sending me a photo of your pet, I will give each piece to at least 3 different artists, giving you a choice of works, and giving 3 artists work.  You pay nothing until you decide which of the 3 you would like.   You also have some input into the type of artist you like and what you would like it to say.

My next trip will be sometime this summer, returning in mid-August. 

Please feel free to contact me with any questions at   You can also see additional works by these artists at my website

Why I love Nepal - dogs on gates!


This dog on a gate in Kathmandu would certainly keep me out!

This reuse of a classic stenciled "Beware of Dog" signboard (taken from the Everest Kennel Club's common sign) made me laugh!

In this case, they used the stenciled sign as a template and made their own "Be Ware of Dog" signboard.

Same dog, different artist! 

A hound of a different color over the traditional Everest Kennel Club signboard.

These signboards are fast disappearing, all replaced by the ubiquitous Everest Kennel Club sign!

You can help stem this tide!   Most of the traditional work of Nepali signboard artists are being replaced by digital or mass-produced signage throughout Nepal.  

By ordering a commissioned portrait of your pet (dog, cat, bird, reptile, tortoise, etc) you give 3 Nepali signboard artists work.   You get a choice of 3 cool portraits hand-painted on metal and 3 artists get work.  

Micro-finance through art patronage!

Contact me at or find out more on my website at   Help save a dying art and have a piece of history.   These pieces have been collected by curators, art gallery owners, museum-goers and ordinary people with pets who collect art and want to make a difference in these artists' lives.