Samadhi Series: I See the Emerald Buddha for the First Time (detail)
In September, I went to Thailand for the first time. On the first day when the Dean and her husband took me to the Grand Palace in Bangkok, I saw the Emerald Buddha in the temple. The Emerald Buddha is so beautiful. It is set up high on an altar, high above worshippers and admirers. I cannot capture the beauty and the feeling of experiencing the Emerald Buddha. So I think of Buddhist philosophy. The title “Samadhi” refers to the state of enlightenment. It is explained this way: “Neti! Neti! It is not this! It is not this!” In the book Light of Yoga the author says that this state of enlightenment can only be expressed by profound silence. I felt complete silence and joy in the presence of the Emerald Buddha. This painting for the exhibition in Viet Nam is the first time I try to express my feeling about the Emerald Buddha. I put him closer to us, looking serenely at us and also not looking at us, the state of enlightmenet is devoid of ego. I looked at this painting every day I worked on it of this exhibition. It is not good enough at all. I think in my whole life I cannot express the quality of the Emerald Buddha.