I never heard about Sumi-e since many months ago, visiting Antoni Tapies’ Foundation site I read about an oriental way of painting that pay my atention.
Introduction of the foundation’s site article started explainig about a 2000 year old art of Japanese brush painting. Monks atarted the tradition with the intention of trainig the concentration and clarity.
The monks adhered to a rigorous schedule of meditation in preparation for painting. The creative process is really simple. Just four steps:
1. Prepare the inkstone
2. Grind the sumi ink
3. Load the ink in right weight
4. Release the brush stroke on rice paper
The art of ink painting is much more difficult than coloured. It needs much more concentration and artistic combination. Today, becoming a Master Sumi-e artist requires the same investment of effort and time in rigorous training and discipline.
Two weeks later I was trying my first Sumi-e experience with Mihoko Ono’s training in casa Asia. Mihoko let me know the sumi-e basics starting drawings of orchids, bamboo, strawberrries and fishes.
Sumi-e is not just the fact of drawing or zen painting art but an extremely exercise of mind concentration. It’s very close to a zen meditation on a painting experience over paper rice.
Firstly, breath, after that if possible, a cup of tea, breath and… prepare the inkstone to start process.
Experience is awesome. Really difficult to explain.