Arts & Culture

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

    Mind—Les Levine Media Project was a project in three parts: 52 “See Your Mind” billboards, 5,000 Mind boxes in a shopping mall, and a television spot—all in the city of Langenhagen, Germany, in November, 1995. The boxes were sold and the money donated to a fund for Bosnian children. On the top of the box are the words “This box is empty,” on the bottom, “This box is form.” In 1965, Les Levine became the first artist to produce art videos. In 1970 he founded the Museum of Mott Art in Langenhagen, Germany. His work has been seen in hundreds of individual and group exhibitions all over the world. More »
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    Cambodia Paid Member

    In Samsara: Death and Rebirth in Cambodia, Ellen Bruno retells a Cambodian Buddhist prophecy as scenes of Phnom Penh move in silent slow motion: "A darkness will fall on the people of Cambodia. There will be homes but no people in them. There will be roads but no travelers upon them. The land will be ruled by barbarians without religion. There will be blood in the streets as to touch the belly of an elephant. Only the deaf and the mute will survive." This chilling vision, brought to life during the rule of the Khmer Rouge, is quietly, affectingly portrayed here while voices of Cambodian survivors tell their stories. Clearly shaken and deeply hurt, these people are shown rebuilding their lives and evidencing a resilience and dignity that draws on the very beliefs challenged by the holocaust. More »
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    Radical Presence Paid Member

    The New York Times has called Anne Waldman that “combination of oracle, siren and den mother . . . at once deadpan and ferocious.” An explorer of poetry, she has written forty books and pamphlets in almost as many years. Her recently released Vow to Poetry (Coffee House Press) is a mix of autobiography, manifesto, poetry, and essays on poetics, Buddhism, politics, and more. Cofounder, with Allen Ginsberg, of Naropa University’s Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, Waldman divides her time between teaching, writing, performing and traveling. Writer Sonya Lea Ralph had a chance to speak with her last summer in Seattle. 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 »