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The Artist

“There are spirits of the mountain, spirits of the water.   What if those spirits were gone?  Gone because everyone had moved to different places?  How would they cope with the new environment?”   -Tsherin Sherpa

Above and Below tells the story of just such a spirit.  Tsherin Sherpa, devout Buddhist artist, trained by his father in the art of traditional Tibetan Buddhist thangka painting, moves from Kathmandu to San Francisco and reinvents himself, finding new meaning for an ancient art form, and launching the next wave in Tibetan contemporary art. 

Narrated by Actor Peter Coyote


The Project Story

above-and-below-p2_father son
Sheri Brenner, the film’s Director, met Tsherin during a visit to the San Francisco Asian Art Museum.  He was demonstrating thangka painting.  She was enthralled by his work and they spoke about making a short film.   Tsherin recommended that Sheri film his father, Urgen Dorje Sherpa, a master thangka painter known throughout the country.   That began a project which spanned the next fifteen years in which Sheri filmed Tsherin in the United States and Urgen Dorje Sherpa in Nepal, gaining rare insight into the real world of Tibetan sacred art and lives of its artist.    
“It was an honor to have a privileged look into the lives of these two artistic masters and teachers.   I knew in my heart that others would also want to enter the sanctum of Buddhist art through this film.  My hope is to share a piece of their world with the audience.” 
-Sheri Brenner

Buddha Thangka by Urgen Dorje Sherpa, 2003

Soon To Be Released: “Images of Enlightenment” is a companion film to Above and Below. It tells the story of Urgen Dorje Sherpa and his contributions to the Art of Thangka Painting.

Watch the Trailer

Support Above and Below

Above and Beyond has been winning awards for telling this important and insightful story.  Become part of the film’s ongoing journey as we work to bring it to audiences around the world.  Your support will have an immediate impact.
Above and Beyond is fiscally sponsored by Independent Arts & Media, a 501(c)(3) charity.  Because of this partnership, all contributions are tax deductible.    Every dollar will make a difference.
Independent Arts and Media

Educational Sales

Above and Below is now available for educational and institutional use!
We work with GOOD DOCS on educational distribution for Above and Below.

Key Creative Team

Where to See the Film

Scheduled Screenings

September 9, 2023 

Monterey Museum of Art

Prior Screenings

April 30, 2023   12:00PM

Berkeley Art Museum (BAMPFA)  Berkeley, CA.  

Feb. 18, 2023 at 3:30-5:00

The Rubin Museum NY, New York 

Feb. 4, 2023 at 2:00PM

Peabody Essex Museum, Salem MA

Sept 9-11, 2022, 2:30pm

Tibet International Film Festival,  Global Premiere, Zurich

July 15, 2022, 2:30pm

Big Sound Film Festival, Ontario
Big Sound International Film Festival

June 2, 2022, 6:30pm

SFDocFest,  Roxie Theater
Audience Award, Best Short Film 


Buddhist International Film Festival
international buddhist film fest

date and time
to be announced

Contact Us


Sheri Brenner
Sherizade Productions