Arts & Culture

The growing influence of Buddhist artistic expression in contemporary culture
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    The Quality of Mercy Paid Member

    Meredith Monk’s latest work, mercy, is the culmination of the performance artist’s legendary career. Robert Coe traces her path from her days as a student in the 1960s to her work today and life as a Buddhist practitioner. More »
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    Wisdom and Compassion: Sacred Art of Tibet Paid Member

    Strains of long silver trumpets and the deepthroated chanting of monks greeted the arrival of His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco in April. The religious and temporal leader of Tibet's exiled Buddhist population had come to grant a special blessing, initiating the creation of a large-scale sand mandala for the opening of "Wisdom and Compassion: The Sacred Art of Tibet." This stunning exhibition of Tibetan paintings, sculpture, and tapestries dating from 900 to 1900 C.E. has been assembled from prominent museums and private collections in North America, Europe, and the Soviet Union. Notably, none of the pieces were borrowed from either institutional or official sources in the People's Republic of China, to which Tibet has been politically bound for more than thirty years. More »
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    Holy Smoke Paid Member

    Even if it were not one of the most private things about us, belief would be among the hardest to communicate. What touches us deepest is what can be transmitted least. As Oscar Wilde once noted, “People whose desire is solely for self-realization never know where they are going. They can’t know.” And so anyone who has traveled to a belief-system different from that of those around her faces the most agonized, and poignant, of miscommunications, crying to those around her—as they cry back to her—“Why why why can’t you love (or trust, or understand) what I do?” More »
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    Divine and Intimate Paid Member

    Tibetan Buddhist art is like no other art. It burns with a sharp, nervy incandescence, like a fire generously stoked but tightly contained. The most comprehensive gathering of such material in the West belongs to the Newark Museum. And recently, with the museum celebrating its 90th birthday, an unparalleled amount of that work was on view. Tibetan Buddhist art is like no other art. It burns with a sharp, nervy incandescence, like a fire generously stoked but tightly contained. The most comprehensive gathering of such material in the West belongs to the Newark Museum. And recently, with the museum celebrating its 90th birthday, an unparalleled amount of that work was on view. More »
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    In the News Paid Member

    FIRST PRIZE When Aung San Suu Kyi, under house arrest in Rangoon for the past two years, was named the latest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, the news triggered massive protests against the repressive regime in Burma. Universities were shut down when students demonstrated for Aung San Suu Kyi's release and, in a plea for world attention, Buddhist monks took to the streets carrying big signs in English to, "Free the Winner of the Nobel Peace Prize." (Read the review of Freedom from Fear, a collection of essays by Aung San Suu Kyi).MASS GRAVE FOR MONGOLIAN MONKS More »