Journey for Peace
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama
Photographs by Manuel Bauer
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama is one of the best-known people in the world. Whether he is on another tireless campaign for world peace and international understanding, acting as the head of the Tibetan people or teaching Buddhism, he is almost never at rest.
But despite the virtually uninterrupted glare of the spotlights, his charm never fails to be infectious. Statesman, Master, media star or “simple monk”, as he refers to himself: the Dalai Lama combines all of these functions.
The Swiss photographer Manuel Bauer accompanied the Dalai Lama for four years on over forty trips to a host of countries. No photographer had ever been permitted to spend so much time in the Dalai Lama’s presence; none had ever been allowed to come so close to him. Manuel Bauer has created portraits of the Dalai Lama at many of his countless official appearances.
He has photographed him with national leaders, and he has also caught His Holiness in a few of the precious, brief moments of peace and solitude accorded him amid the hubbub of his everyday life: lost in thought on the ramp of a parking garage, gazing contemplatively out of an airplane window, meditating on a hotel bed, dressed only in his undershirt. Bauer was there when the doors were closed to everyone else, and he was permitted to remain with the Dalai Lama at 3:30 in the morning for the beginning of his early meditation, during one of the most intimate moments in His Holiness’s life.
Bauer's portrait of the Dalai Lama goes beyond the public figure: it provides a glimpse into a private life so far absent from the polished official record and shielded from the glare of the media. The result is a fascinating up-close look at a world-famous man, as well as an homage to one of the most remarkable personalities of our time.
The exhibition “Journey for Peace”, featuring some 70 photographs, will open August 4th 2005 in Zurich, after which it will embark on an international tour. The exhibition will be accompanied by the publication of a 300-page photographic book, in English, German and French editions.
The photographer Manuel Bauer, born in 1966 in Zurich, is a founding member of Lookat, the international photo-agency. He is known for his work on India, Tibet and exile Tibetan communities. The Dalai Lama was on hand in person to open his 1990 photographic exhibition “Tibetan Culture on Foreign Soil”. In 1995 Bauer managed the remarkable feat of accompanying a six-year-old girl as she fled Lhasa with her father, making for India over the ice-bound Himalayas. The resulting work, “Escape from Tibet”, is one of the 1990s’ most frequently republished works of photographic reporting. Bauer has been His Holiness’s official photographer since 2001.
Bauer’s work appears regularly in international magazines and exhibitions, and has received numerous prizes and distinctions, among them the World Press Photo Award and the Picture of the Year Award.
© 2005 www.dalailama-archives.org