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par Lemardelé Élise - publié le , mis à jour le

Independent researcher affiliated part-time as Visiting Professor for Tibetan art and archaeology, Centre for Tibetan Studies, Sichuan University (since 2007) ; part-time lecturer for Tibetan Department, National Institute of Oriental Languages (Paris) 2014-1016.

Academic training in Art History (B.A. Cum laude, Barnard College, Columbia University), Diploma of Tibetan Language and Civilisation of the National Institute for Oriental Languages (Paris), studies in Tibetan history and philology (Thesis of the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, 4th section, under the direction of Prof. Ariane Spanien) and studies in Tibetan religions (under the direction of Prof. Anne-Marie Blondeau, EPHE, 5th section).

Research Themes

- Archaeology and Art History of Tibet and the Western Himalayas (Ladakh and Spiti) in the light of historic inscriptions (from the Tibetan Empire until 13th century) (project with Laurianne Bruneau and the Franco-Indian Archeological Mission in Ladakh) ;
- manuscripts of Tibetan Buddhism and their illuminations (project with Matthew Kapstein) ;
- lconservation of cultural heritage in Tibet and consecration rituals linked with conservation projects (former unit “rituals and modernity”) ;
- Contemporary Tibetan art ( ephemeral performances and installations).

Keywords : archeology, stone stele, art of Tibetan Buddhism (portable and mural paintings, historical inscriptions, manuscript illuminations, sculptures, Tibetan contemporary art.

Major Publications


Tibetan Art Tracing the Development of art and spiritual ideals 600-2000 A.D. Antique Collectors’ Club, UK (Traduction : Arts et Sagesses du Tibet, Edition du Zodiaque, Arte Tibetano, Libsa Espagne, Arte Tibetana, Jaca Book, Milano). 1999.

Early Himalayan Art (Ashmolean Museum, Oxford), 2007. online version :

Hidden Treasures of the Himalayas : Tibetan manuscripts, paintings and sculptures of Dolpo ( Serindia Publications), 2009.


Co-Editor with Giacomella Orofino, Discoveries in Western Tibet and Western Himalayas, (Brill), 2007.

The Arts of Tibetan Painting : Recent Research on Manuscripts, Murals and Thangkas of Tibet, the Himalayas and Mongolia (11th-19th century). Proceedings of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, 12th session, art history panels, Vancouver, 2010. ( 2012.


"Tracing the impact of Kashmiri art in Guge and Ladakh, 11th-13th century : Towards a re-assessment of the chronology of Alchi " in Journal of Inner Asian Art and Archaeology, vol. 9 ( 2017).

"Tibetan inscriptions at Alchi, Part I : Towards a reassessment of the chronology"
(with Shawo Khacham), in Guntram Hazod and Shen Weirong, eds. Tsering Gyalbo Memorial Issue, Historical and Philological Studies of China’s Western Regions (Renmin University, Beijing) (2017).

"Three Ancient Manuscripts from Tholing in the Tucci Collection, IsIAO, Roma, Part I : Manuscript 1329 E" in Elena De Rossi Filibeck, Michela Clemente, Giorgio Milanetti, Oscar Nalesini and Federica Venturi, eds. Studies in Honour of Luciano Petech : A Commemoration Volume 1914-2014. Rivista degli Studi Orientali 89/1 (2017).

"Three Ancient Manuscripts from Tholing in the Tucci Collection, IsIAO, Roma, Part II : Manuscript 1329 O " (with Charlotte Eng) in Eva Allinger, Frantz Grenet, Christian Jahoda, Maria-Katharina Lang, Anne Vergati, eds. Interaction in the Himalayas and Central Asia : Processes of Transfer, Translation and Transformation in Art, Archaeology, Religion and Polity. Proceedings of the Third International SEECHAC Colloquium, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna, 25-27.IX.2013, Vienna : Austrian Academy of Sciences Press (2016 : 173-189).

"Three Ancient Manuscripts from Tholing in the Tucci Collection, IsIAO, Roma, Part III : Manuscript 1329 F" in Michela Clemente ,O. Nalesini & F. Venturi, eds. Perspectives on Tibetan Culture. A Small Garland of Forget-me-nots offered to Elena De Rossi Filbeck, Kathmandu : Vajra Publications (2017).

"Preliminary remarks on Birds and Deer in Shangshung and Early Tibet" in Tsering Thar, Samten Karmay, Amy Heller, eds. Studies on Shangshung and Early Tibet. Proceedings of the China International Conference of Shangshung Culture Studies, 19-21.IX.2015. Beijing Minzu Daxue Press (2016).

"Illuminations in Tibetan Manuscripts" in Matthew Kapstein (ed). Tibetan Manuscripts and Early Printed books, Towards a manuel of Tibetan manuscript Studies.

"Tibetan artists and Tibetan identity : who’s who and since when ? " in Amy Heller (ed). Towards the Study of visual culture of Tibet and the Himalayas, Proceedings of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, 14th conference, Bergen, 20-25.June 2016. ( 2017)

CV Amy Heller