Seeing the beauty of life through Buddhist art

SHANGHAI’S Jade Buddha Temple has launched a modern art exhibition with more than a dozen artworks based on Buddhist mantras and mandala-style designs.

The exhibition — “Mantra Mandala” — includes 16 paintings that express the various spiritual demands in this fast-paced modern society. The series of works involve many symbols from Buddhist classics. Each speaks of a certain mantra.

“The exhibition aims to create a space for citizens to think quietly and meditate,” says artist Zhang Jiayun who created the series.

She says she would take a bath and burn incense to calm down before painting each of the pieces. The whole process made her feel “joyful, peaceful and devoted.”

One painting, “Wisdom Sea,” keeps repeating the mantra “yam” in semi-circles representing waves on the sea, which shows people should make themselves as peaceful as the sea to see through everything.

Another artwork entitled “Five Dhyani Buddhas” suggests viewers abandon the worry, desire, anger, ignorance and jealousness.

All paintings are for sale during the exhibition through tomorrow, and all proceeds will go to the Jade Buddha Temple for its ongoing renovation.

The temple’s main pavilion is being relocated 30 meters away as part of the renovation which will also see two buildings replaced. The Grand Hall, dating from 1918, is moving to the north along with three huge Buddha statues inside.


Date: Through May 16, 8:30am-4pm

Venue: 2/F, Juequn Building, Jade Buddha Temple

Address: 1017 Jiangning Rd