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Khardar Gurung works in the windy town of Jomsom — 9000’ (2800 meters) in altitude. He is the only artist working in the district at this time, and his fanciful signs fill the streets of the town and through much of the lower Annapurna Circuit.
Khardar is quite graceful in his rendering of the Tibetan script, including a lovely drop shadow. No question that he is my best Tibetan calligrapher.
These works were done for my first trip, when I had few commissions — only a grand idea to promote Danger Dog signboard art. And as there were no roads or transport, so to speak, I did not carry any photos of dogs with me. So each of Khardar’s dogs are a work of his imagination. I did carry the metal signs back down to civilization however.
Gurung is a common surname of the Annapurna region. Jomsom has an airport and is the commercial drop off point for many goods on their way to the Mustang District of Nepal.
The first Danger Dog signboard ever to be sold was by Khardar. The owner of the popular Lotus Gallery in the Thamel area bought it as a gift. Turns out the gallery owner liked it so much he has kept it for himself.