Buddhist Recovery Network - Inaugural Conference

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2009 Inaugural Conference

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The BRN: The Story So Far

How the 12 Steps got to Santikaro

Vince Cullen and the Thamkrabok Monastery

International Expansion of the BRN

Miya Ando

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Conference Brochure

The full 2009 Inaugural Conference brochure is now available for download . You may also wish to read the various parts of the brochure on line below.


Miya Ando

We are very privileged that Buddhist artist Miya Ando, who works on steel canvases has unveiled a new commission for Against the Stream timed to coincide with the Conference.

California/New York based artist Miya Ando has been creating works on steel canvases for the past eleven years. Utilizing a technique honed over the past decade, Ando is able to tint, polish, refine and ultimately create layered depth into a fat metal plane. Representing physical, emotional and spiritual landscapes, the elements of Ando’s compositions are akin to the Meditation Center’s.

A practicing Buddhist herself, Ando’s art is both meditative and a tribute to honoring, respecting and nourishing. Ando’s commission for Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society consists of a grid of eight steel square canvases measuring four feet each. The configuration is a metaphor for the Dharma Wheel and the 8-fold path. The surface of the squares’ metal material reflects this special organization’s powerful, sincere and inspiring integrity. The art focuses on the pure intentions of its setting.

Ando writes: “For more than a decade, I have been working with steel canvas and metal finishing techniques to create quiet, abstract, meditative environments. Ultimately I am interested in the study of subtraction to the point of purity, simplicity and refinement.

I am Japanese and Russian, raised bilingually and in two distinct cultures -a Buddhist temple in Japan and a mountainous region of Northern California. I am a descendant of Bizen swordmaker Ando Yoshiro Masakatsu and was raised among swordsmiths-turned Buddhist priests. My spiritual, familial, and academic experiences deeply inform every aspect of my work.

My reasons for working with steel are multifold. It is dynamic, having the ability to simultaneously convey strength and permanence while remaining delicate, soft, fragile, luminous and ethereal. Metaphorically, steel’s physicality can evoke steadfast truths, steel’s reflective surface gives it an elusive quality that I utilize to invoke ideas about universality and evanescence -the transitory and ephemeral qualities of nature, quietude, and the underlying impermanence of all things.

Metal canvases provide me with an understated palate of luminous greys. I work with a number of metal finishing techniques including patinas, pigments, solvents, and other chemicals that affect the color of the steel. I etch with acid, heat with a torch, and oxidize the surface. I grind, polish, burnish, and hand-sand. I apply multiple coats of lacquer and utilize automotive finishes. I consider my work a meditative practice, a way to lose oneself in an activity through concentration via the total absorption of the mind and body on a singular task.

Recently my work has combined 2D and 3D pieces into installations of transcendent minimal spaces and environments. These contemplative, luminous voids are at once empty and serene, while also alive, filled with potential and possibility. In these new installations, I invite the viewer into a meditative space, and it is my hope that these spaces inspire introspection, refection and solace. My intention is to put forth quiet environments which come from a place of sincerity and compassion.”

Miya Ando’s website is at www.miyaando.com .


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