Art Speaks: Art From a Thousand Days with Kiranada Benjamin
In August 2023, Textile Center was honored to welcome artist Kiranada Benjamin for a talk on art and meditation. This Art Speaks conversation was in conjunction with Kiranada’s Guest Teaching Artist workshop at Textile Center this August: Rozome Intensive, exploring the art of Japanese resist painting.
In this hybrid in-person / online discussion, Kiranada spoke about her three years spent on a solitary retreat, alone in the forest of mid-America, and how taking her art practice with her in silence allowed for the discovery of extraordinary insights about life, self, and creativity. Kiranada also shared her thoughts on Buddhism, art, isolation, fearlessness, and no-self.
Kiranada Sterling Benjamin (she/her) is an award-winning international artist, researcher and author specializing in Japanese textiles. Kiranada is also an ordained Buddhist priest. Her training, research and love of resist patterned cloth culminated in The World of Rozome: Wax Resist Textiles of Japan (1996, 2002), the first book in English on the topic and an “acknowledged classic on contemporary fine art of wax resist.” Her exhibitions included solo shows in Asia, Europe, Central America and the U.S. She has lectured on Japanese costume and wax-resist textiles at the Smithsonian Institution, Oxford University, Harvard Graduate School of Design and the Japan Foundation, Kyoto. She is the coordinator of the “World Batik Conference-Boston 2005” at Massachusetts College of Art, and curator of “The Rozome Masters of Japan Exhibition” that toured the USA in 2005 – 2006. For over eighteen years, she lived in Kyoto, Japan, where she taught at Doshisha and Kyoto Sangyo Universities, participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions, and wrote on textiles for the Mainichi Daily News and other publications. Recipient of grants from the Japan Foundation, the Sasakawa Foundation, the Daiwa-Anglo Japanese Foundation, New Zealand Center for Japanese Studies; she now teaches at Massachusetts College of Art in Boston.