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Creare i Buddha (Creating Buddhas con sottotitoli in italiano)

Creare i Buddha (Creating Buddhas con sottotitoli in italiano)

With the translation expertise of my multi-talented sister-in-law, Cecilia Mari, and the technical assistance of Roberto Ciscato of 01 Editing in Milan, an Italian subtitled version of Isadora Gabrielle Leidenfrost‘s acclaimed film, Creating Buddhas: the Making and Meaning of Fabric Thangkas has been born! The Italian title is Creare i Buddha: la realizzazione e il significato dei thangka in tessuto.

It’s just in time for my upcoming exhibition in Milan which will open on November 29 with a film screening that night. The exhibition, Mosaici di Seta: immagini e tecniche sacre dalla tradizione tibetana, is a small solo show hosted by the Centro Mindfulness Project in Via Cenisio 5. I will display a range of works from traditional to contemporary, sacred to profane. Visitors will have the chance to see three traditional thangkas I’ve produced over the last ten years, including the Green Tara featured in the film. My recently completed thangka-quilt of Chenrezig will also be there, displaying a combination of traditional and contemporary techique and style. I believe this piece exemplifies the most promising direction for my work in the near future. Finally, there will be two pieces which bring to life photographs of ordinary Tibetans by Diane Barker. In addition to viewing the artwork, visitors will be able to read about the tradition and view photos illustrating the traditional production techniques. I will be present every Wednesday and Friday between November 29 and December 19 to answer questions and share my experience. Other viewing times can be arranged by appointment through January 4.

Creating Buddhas: the Making and Meaning of Fabric Thangkas (Creare i Buddha: la realizzazione e il significato dei thangka in tessuto) will be shown on Saturday, November 29 at 9 pm and on Friday, December 19 at 7 pm, as well as by special appointment for groups. The Benvenuto Club has already booked a screening, as has the Dzogchen Community of Milan.

A note about my hosts (loosely translated and adapted from their website):

The Mindfulness Project is a not-for-profit association whose purpose is to deepen the dialogue between western thought and buddhist dharma, particularly in the field of helping relationships. Founded in 2003 by a group of research psychologist-educators and Buddhist teachers committed to finding ways to integrate and adapt the “traditional culture” of Buddhist teachings into our western experience. Mindfulness Project collaborates with the Istituto Lama Tsong Khapa in Pomaia, Italy, but is independent and does not identify exclusively with any single Buddhist tradition. Instead, it seeks a nonsectarian approach, convinced that this approach is the foundation for the development of a modern Buddhism.

In recent decades, a lively dialogue has been building between western psychology and the Buddhist view of the mind. The interaction between the two approaches views psychological development and spiritual growth as mutually supportive. Personal psychological development is considered essential to spiritual growth and the transformation of suffering.

Mindfulness Project aims to be a starting point not a destination. Seeing the process of integrating classical Buddhist teachings with the modern western reality as a long and ongoing endeavor, their intention is to create a space of open investigation through their conferences, counseling school, and training programs.

The Center in Milan (at Via Cenisio 5) offers therapy and training to groups and individuals. The focus of all their activities is on the development of the human potential, always present even where uneasiness and suffering appear. This development occurs through recognizing in each person a zone of health and wisdom, of resources and intuitive knowing, and of spirituality — levels of being frequently obscured by the flow of existential events.

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