Samadhi (2017-2018)
Project info

Kare-sansui is the Japanese phrase referring to dry landscape garden. It is one of the traditional garden styles in Japan, and was developed at temples of Zen Buddhism during the Muromachi era (1338-1573). It is mainly constructed with rock arrangements and white sand. The sea is symbolized not by water but by sand. Monks in Zen temples see the garden and reflect on themselves. Then they get to the spiritual state of nothingness. They imagine the ocean in the garden and imagine the sound of water.

According to Zen teachings, zen is about self-reliance and self-being. I haven’t reached such a Buddhahood yet. I just quietly sit down in front of the garden for a long time and think of the true meaning of life and Zen teachings. While I was looking at this minimalistic garden through the viewfinder, I felt as if I was floating in the air and looking down on nature. Furthermore, I realized how small I am in this universe.

Kare-sansui is the garden which is made in the simplest style. Thus, people inflate their thoughts and the ideas of their lives. As civilization progresses, people become attached to their belongings. Therefore, there are incessant conflicts of attachment in this modern world. I think Kare-sansui can release us from this daily suffering of attachment.

I see the eternal value in the garden and think of the long history of the stones and sand there. For my art works this time, I integrated the Platinum Palladium print technique. The technique was invented more than 140 years ago. And even now it is said to have the best quality as an archival process. I tried to express the world of meditation, in which Zen monks would see. I want many people to understand what true happiness is through my photographs.

Samadhi : State of intense concentration achieved through meditation in Sanskrit.