Watercolor on Paper (29 x 37 inches) 2004, Zhengping Chen
The woman in this painting practices the sitting meditation, the fifth exercise of Falun Gong. Lotus flowers blooming around her indicate the purifying effect of the meditation on both mind and body.
Pure Lotus is painted with a combination of traditional Chinese painting and watercolor in the western tradition. The artist said she chose to combine these two traditions because she believes the traditional arts are gifts of the Divine, their realm of expression is high, and they can help lead people toward enlightenment of their spirits. When asked what her inspiration for this piece was, the artist said as a Falun Gong practitioner, her first thought was how could she possibly carry to people the idea of wonderment of cultivation and the transcendence that we who practice, may experience. Falun Dafa cultivates both the mind and body, and doing meditation can allow one to enter into a state of deep tranquility and a moment that is solemn and sacred. She wanted to express this quality, this transcendental experience that Falun Gong can bring. She expresses the purity of this experience.
In this painting, the “Lotus Flower,” a maiden sits in meditation. She gives one the impression of pure serenity, free of all mundane or worldly elements. Her hair is pinned up high to show the height her mind has reached. In the background are the lotus flowers, which also gives an otherworldly impression. The lotus is the symbol of purity and also the flower of the Buddha’s paradise. In traditional Chinese culture the lotus shows the predestined relationship with the Buddha, and it is used as a symbol of one’s attainment status, that is, how high one’s spirit has ascended. The pure maiden sits in front of the lotus that is the totally pure, not touched by this world.