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Article

Kirk Ambrose

Lithuanian art historian, scholar of folklore and Egyptology, and diplomat of Russian birth. Son of the celebrated Lithuanian Symbolist poet of the same name, Jurgis Baltrušaitis II studied under Henri(-Joseph) Focillon at the Sorbonne and earned the PhD in 1931. The concerns of his mentor are evident in ...

Article

Eleanor Heartney

Thai sculptor and installation artist. Boonma studied at the Poh Chang Arts and Crafts School, Bangkok (1971–3) and went on to study painting at Silpakorn University, Bangkok (1974–8). He became a Buddhist monk in 1986 and his work explores a distinctively Buddhist art language. His early work dealt with environmental issues that came out of his concerns about the effects of industrialization on rural Thailand. Increasingly his work became involved with issues of illness and death as his own health faltered. He subtly melded natural forms, Buddhist architecture and ritual objects with a minimalist sense of structure inspired by his study of Western art. He fashioned sculptural objects based on Buddhist alms bowls, ‘painted’ with healing herbs and created walls and enclosures from stacks of hundreds of ceramic temple bells....

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1877; died 1970.

Painter, calligrapher.

Shunkai Bundo was a monk of the Buddhist Tendai sect and a member of the Japan Art Academy.

New York, 27 April 1994: Universal Brother­hood and International Peace (hanging scroll in a casket of wood, ink on paper...

Article

Eiheiji  

Dennis Lishka

Japanese Zen Buddhist monastery of the Sōtō sect, in Fukui Prefecture. Eiheiji’s significance derives largely from the place in the history of Japanese Buddhism of its founder, Dōgen (1199–1253), and to his interpretation of Sōtō Zen monastic practice. After 1217 Dōgen joined the dominant Tendai school of Buddhism, but he grew disillusioned with Japanese Buddhism as a feasible human soteriology, although he was much attracted to the practice of Zen meditation. In ...

Article

English sculptor and draughtsman. He studied archaeology, anthropology and art history at Trinity College, Cambridge (1968–71) and Buddhist meditation in India and Sri Lanka (1971–4), experiences that profoundly inform his work. Influenced by the ideals of Indian sculpture as much as by those of modernism, his sculptures use the human form to explore man’s existence in and relation to the world. He is primarily known for the lead figures cast from his own body. Free of individualizing surface detail, with welding lines emphatically exposed, these remain physical casings rather than imitative representations of the universal human form. His belief that the spiritual and physical selves are inseparable is reflected in works such as ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 21 January 1930, in Chiba.

Painter. Landscapes.

Goto Sumio was the son of a priest at a Buddhist temple at Sekiyado. In 1943 he started his preparation to become a monk. In 1945 he began to learn painting under Yamamoto Kyujin, and in ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1895, in Kyushu; died 1933.

Painter, poet.

Koga Harue trained as a Buddhist monk, subsequently becoming a poet and then a painter. Influenced by Paul Klee and Giorgio de Chirico, he played an important role in the development of early 20th-century Japanese painting, introducing echoes of the modernist movements in Europe, such as cubism, futurism, constructivism and especially surrealism, which he can be said to represent. His pictures from the late 1920s are full of unusual and bizarre figuration. He exhibited regularly at the Nika (two disciplines - sculpture and painting) Salon and was selected for the 4th Nikakai Exhibition in ...

Article

Mimi Hall Yiengpruksawan

Japanese Buddhist temple and shrine complex in Ito district, Wakayama Prefecture. Lying about 70 km south of Osaka on Mt Kōya (Kōyasan), a plateau on the eastern slope of the Takamine range, it was founded in the 9th century ad as the headquarters of the Shingon sect (...

Article

Japanese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1950.

Painter (including gouache).

Koso Mitsutaka studied Buddhist religion and philosophy. In 1984 he went to continue his studies in Europe. He exhibits regularly in Japan. In France he has exhibited at the Salon de Réalités Nouvelles and the Salon de la Jeune Peinture, while he has also exhibited in Luxembourg, in the Salon de Printemps....

Article

Barbara Stoler Miller

Austrian art historian, teacher, and museum curator, active in India and the USA. Her published writings begin with her PhD dissertation on early Buddhist art (1919), written at the University of Vienna under the supervision of Josef Strzygowski. In 1921 she went to India at the invitation of Rabindranath Tagore (...

Article

Joan Kee

Taiwanese conceptual artist, active also in the USA. Lee spent his childhood in Taichung, where he studied Chan Buddhism from the age of eight. At 12, Lee spent time among Taiwanese expatriates in the Dominican Republic, and two years later moved to the USA, where he later studied biology at the University of Washington, Seattle. He transferred, however, to the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, CA, where he focused on architecture and textiles (...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1923, in Nagasaki Prefecture.

Sculptor. Monuments.

Nagare Masayuki began his studies under the aegis of a Zen Buddhist temple in Kyoto. He subsequently took courses in applied traditional arts at Ritsumeikan University in Japan and became an apprentice to a sword manufacturer. He produced many sculptures for public places in Japan and the USA, notably in New York, San Francisco and Minneapolis....

Article

Henrik H. Sørensen

Japanese collector, geographer and Buddhist priest. In 1901, while studying in London, the young Otani became acquainted with Stein, Sir (Marc) Aurel, who had just returned from his first Central Asian expedition, and was inspired to undertake similar excavations. In 1902 Otani and four Japanese assistants set out for Central Asia, where they stayed until ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1894, in Shizuoka (Kyuchu Island).

Painter, sculptor. Religious subjects.

Sawada Masahiro obtained a diploma from the department of sculpture at the University of Fine Arts in Tokyo. He specialised in Buddhist sculpture working mainly for the temples. From 1921 his work appeared in many group and individual exhibitions in Tokyo....

Article

Su Tao  

Taiwanese, 20th century, female.

Active in Belgium.

Painter.

Su Tao produces sensitive paintings steeped in Buddhist and Zen philosophy, featuring cross-like brush strokes, on rice paper. She held a solo exhibition in Waterloo in 1991.

Article

Japanese, 19th – 20th century, male.

Born 19 March 1852, in Edo (Tokyo); died 10 October 1934, in Tokyo.

Sculptor. Buddhist subjects. Wood carving, bronze and metalwork.

Takamura Koun exhibited in Paris including at the 1900 Exposition Universelle, where he received a bronze medal. He sought to preserve the art of traditional Japanese wood carving....

Article

Deborah Nash

Chinese cartoonist, teacher, translator and writer. He is best known for the lyrical cartoons he created from the 1920s to the 1960s, which explored themes of Buddhist philosophy and the innocence of childhood through humorous observations of daily life. He trained as a teacher at the First Teacher Training College in Hangzhou, where he was taught by ...