I was sorting through my video archives a while back and discovered some great footage from one of my first visits to Gyeongju back in the Spring of 2003. I had stumbled into a Korea-Japan Buddhist Culture Festival in Tumuli Park and was lucky enough to catch the performance of the famed Korean Zen Master Beomju Sunim (법주스님), painting a spontaneous portrait of the Dalma (달마), or Bodhidharma, on a 10′ by 15’ sheet on the ground. The video’s a bit shaky as I was shooting over people’s heads, so I’ve edited from 10 minutes video down to a more watchable 3 and 1/2. I hope you enjoy it and if you’d like to check out more of the work of Beomju Sunim, you can visit the art and video galleries on his website. He’s also got an English page with his biography and philosophy of Zen painting.
UPDATE: Okay, I’ve gotta ‘fess up. I actually wrote this post about a month ago and was saving it for a rainy day when I was too busy to write (and if 4 nights in the hospital doesn’t count as a rainy day, then I don’t know what does). Anyhow, in the last month since writing this post, it seems the entirety of Beomju Sunim’s website has completely disappeared! I will try and track it down if it has indeed migrated. If not, it’s truly a shame as it was the only online record I’d found of this amazing artist.