Dharamsala: Tibetan filmmaker Tsering Wangmo, born and raised in India, has won top honors at the eighth juried competition of the ‘Cinema at Citygarden’ programme.
Organised by Cinema St. Louis (CSL) and funded by the Gateway Foundation, the programme recognises local filmmakers who skillfully incorporate nature into their short films.
Wangmo’s film Boundaries, won the first prize and prize money of $1,500.
Anthropology student at Washington University in St. Louis, Wangmo’s films have delved into profound themes such as exile, refugees, statelessness, belongingness, memory, identity, and the generational trauma resulting from war and displacement, says Tibetan news portal Phayul.
Born in India to Tibetan refugee parents, her personal experiences and background have greatly influenced her filmmaking through themes like family separation, displacement, and political subjugation.
She is an alumna of NYU’s documentary film production program. She also studied journalism at Madras Christian College and mass communication at Himachal Pradesh University (HPU) before pursuing a course in documentary filmmaking in New York.
Her previous projects, including Tibet’s ‘Nomad in Exile’ (2018), ‘Looking Back in Exile’ (2018), ‘Horse’ (2019), ‘Conversation with My Mother’ (2019), ‘In the Mountains’ (2020), and her award-winning film ‘Boundaries’ (2023), explore the complex questions faced by the Tibetan diaspora in exile.
Jessica Pierce, one of this year’s jurors, said, “Many of this year’s submissions spoke to the heart of Cinema at Citygarden, but the winners stood out with their clever meditations on nature, humanity, and whatever it is that lies in between.”
Wangmo has earlier won three awards at My Hero International Film Festival (MHIFF), including the prestigious 2019 Eva Haller Women Transforming Media (WTM) Award in the student division of MHIFF.