It’s a safe bet that anyone who’s spent a prolonged amount of time looking at a painting—or failing that, can recall theSeuratscene fromFerris Bueller’s Day Off—can recognize the meditative power of art. But several artists have taken this idea further, building entire environments meant to help viewers experience deep serenity or contemplation. From giant saltwater tanks to secluded Appalachian outposts, these nine works provide space to guide in focused meditation.
Miya Ando, 8 Fold Path, 2009
Miya Ando, 8 Fold Path, 2009. Courtesy of the artist.
Ando describes her works as “studies in nothingness.” Raised partly in a secluded Buddhist temple in Okayama, Japan, she says her spiritual practice informs her exploration of simplicity and reduction. In 2009, Ando donated her work 8 Fold Path to the Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society in Los Angeles. The work comprises a grid of four steel plates shaded by a thin application of patina. 8 Fold Path serves as a reminder of the dharma wheel—a visual representation of Buddhism’s noble eightfold path—for the L.A. space’s practitioners, who meditate facing the pedestal above which the work hangs.