A few days ago FWBO News reported on the upcoming ‘Buddhism and Creativity’ conference
in which FWBO artists will be taking part.
Arts have always been an integral part of the FWBO, being highlighted by Sangharakshita as one of the six ‘distinctive emphases’ of the FWBO. His talk exploring this is on FreeBuddhistAudio
A recent survey conducted on the FWBO’s European Chairs Assembly illustrated the variety of arts events being held across the movement. We reproduce it here for readers’ interest.
Berlin Buddhist Centre choir
Weekend workshop on the arts including a gallery visit.
Two 2-day workshops including public talks, on ‘Aesthetic appreciation and the spiritual life’, including visits to art exhibitions
Film nights including talk on the evening’s film
Weekend retreat and Friends’ Night on ‘Art
and the Spiritual Life’
Policy of using FWBO artists’ work on their book covers.
Major commissions of painting by Aloka, also sculpture
Poetry used in Dharma teaching
The much-loved Buddhafield Festival
is full of arts events – music, film, dance, drama, large-scale rituals…
Buddhafield has a long tradition of musical accompaniments to mantras
And many opportunities for musicians etc to perform.
Major commission of new FWBO Refuge Tree painting by Chintamani
Five-day thanka painting workshop
Amsterdam Buddhist Centre Choir (meets fortnightly)
Plans for monthly film night
Creative writing weekend workshop
’s ‘Tempest’; Mahler
’s Third Symphony, and Dante’s ‘Divine Comedy’.
Two arts exhibitions by sangha members
Poetry and music evenings
Theatre group (including visits to local productions/concerts)
Music-making and mantra-developing workshops
Seeking funding for arts project (audio-visual equipment and picture-hanging system)
Purchase of painting by Aloka
Donation of Tara
painting by Sangha member
Film nights showing ‘Art-house’ movies, including Indian movies
Exhibitions of work by local artists and Buddhist artists
Sangha visits to local exhibitions, concerts, poetry – and publicity for local arts events at the Centre
Lots of talk in the Centre about the arts!
Centre ‘open-mike’ nights encouraging sangha musicians to ‘do a turn’.
at the Door’ creative writing weekend
’ day focussing on the Dakini
Sangha ‘Cabaret’ evenings with music, poetry, open mike
Idea for ‘Arts Sangha’ evenings
Cultural soiree evenings with music, dance, photos, poetry…
Film club at Buddhist Centre
Participation in Brighton Festival
with, eg stand-up comics, music (Jazz and Chopin
), and arts exhibition
Major commission of painting by Aloka
Monthly ‘Dharma Eye into the World’ events – including singing/debate/film/astronomy
Sangha creative writing group
exhibition planned for Centre in 2009
The Windhorse pantomime! Check last year’s on YouTube
exhibitions in Centre foyer
Japanese monks visiting and chanting
Five or six weeks worth of retreats on arts themes
each year – including the ground-breaking ‘Clowning and Insight’.
On FWBO Photos there’s collections of some FWBO artists’ work
– and of some of the stupas
that have been created around the FWBO.
There’s an FWBO Arts community page
on the Free Buddhist Audio site.
The new FWBO.com website will be building in slots for FWBO artists’ work.
And finally – there’s a variety of personal sites by FWBO artists, teachers, and performers –
Aloka is perhaps the Order’s most prolific artist, and his large paintings of the Buddha grace at least five FWBO Centre shrines. A proper website for him is long overdue but you can see some of his work at www.padmaloka.org.uk/shop.html
Visuddhimati runs ‘Buddhist Pictures
’, a personal site showcasing her work.
And Alokavira (aka Timm Sonnenschein)is a Professional Photographer
, with wide ranging reportage and commissioned work. On his website you can see fine art pinhole photography from Guhyaloka as well as recent photographs of Bhante Sangharakshita.
And last but by no means least, Sangharakshita himself is a poet, and his Collected Works are now available for free download on-line on his personal website - www.sangharakshita.org/_books/complete-poems.pdf
Labels: Arts, Musicians, Online