August 25, 2010

Silk road Buddha revisited

Chicago artist Jennifer Dickson has continued her work creating the full-size Sakyamuni statue which will serve as Korinji's honzon (primary image). The 10" maquette she completed earlier this year (see February 2010 posts) serves as the model for this 30" final piece. Jen sent us this photo revealing the work in progress.

When done, the statue will be hollowed, fired and possibly covered with metal leaf (though we're going to wait and see what the rough, fired finish looks like by itself before deciding).

As described earlier, the design process for this statue led us to examine Buddhist sculptural styles from Japan, T'ang China, India and Gandhara. The Gandharan tradition, with its synthesis of Asian and Hellenistic influences, was particularly of meaning to us. We knew from the beginning that we didn't want to ape a Japanese style; like our buildings, it's important that the statue's style not feel completely out of place in the Wisconsin woods! And yet it still has to authentically represent the continuity that is Buddhism's journey through many cultures.

A fascinating project. Jen was told not to feel any pressure; the statue's image would just be plastered all over our website, and physically enshrined at Korinji, for decades to come.

August 24, 2010

Autumn work dates

Here is another view of the newly framed roof.

Upcoming work dates at Korinji have been announced:

September 25-26
October 16-17
October 26-31

Those final dates will be our cleanup and winterizing session, to ensure that our structure is ready to weather its first Wisconsin winter. Please come for any of these dates you can! To volunteer, please email Korinji: info@korinji.org.

Rumors are flying regarding an end-of-season party on that Halloween weekend, which may involve a visit to one of the nearby Wisconsin Dells water parks (and no doubt someplace with many jacuzzi tubs where construction-weary muscles might find relief). More information shortly.

August 13, 2010

Touching the sky

The structure of our roof is finished. After several weeks of work, including one intensive week during which a crew of professional builders did the actual roof raising, we now have the shell of a building.

In a word, it's huge. We thought it looked big when the deck was completed, but now with walls and roof erected the actual size of our structure is apparent. Standing on the top of the cupola gives a dizzying view out over our ravine.

Within the past few days we completed the attachment of a waterproof underlayment which will last us through the winter as we continue to raise funds. In the spring, we plan to be ready to go with our steel roof.

Now its wrap-up time for the year. We'll shortly announce a revised work weekend schedule through the fall, and our focus will be winterizing what we've accomplished: closing up doors and windows, cleaning up the building site, working on some final landscaping and trail-building, etc.

More images (video) soon. Right now we're too tired!