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BBT Art Seminar - The Film

"Painting entails so many things--there's paint and drawing, and drama and emotion and poetry, yes, and bringing all of that into your work." -Dhriti dasi, from the film.

Last Kartikka, students traveled to Vrindavan from the far corners of the Earth to learn the transcendental art of painting Krishna's pastimes in the first ever BBT Art Seminar.

Thanks to the efforts of the BBT's Brahma Muhurta dasa, we're now able to present his film documenting the efforts of BBT artists Dhriti dasi and Ramdasa Abhirama dasa as they share their realizations and consummate craft for painting Krishna's pastimes in the unique learning environment of holy Vrindavan.

"This course is for those who would like to enter into the world of being able to depict Krishna's pastimes--having them in their minds, and wanting to express that," says Dhriti, as the film begins.

The film takes us, with the artists and their students, into the the heart of Krishna's pastime places--the pastures and groves of Vrindavan--during the early morning hours, seen through the perceptive eyes of the painter.

"The best way is to come outside and see it first hand," explains Ramdas Abhirama das. "It's hard to do just from photographs--photographs tend to be really flat, and to really get a sense of laying down all these tones--real tones--is very important. The nicest time is in the morning, or the evening, when that golden light happens. The light is just emerging, the colors are very subtle."

In November 2007, Brahma Muhurta Prabhu took the time to personally script, film, direct, edit, and produce this beautiful film--in the midst of his busy schedule, which includes printing hundreds of thousands of books in 50 languages.

The BBT Art Seminars were created to insure that Srila Prabhupada's training of BBT artists is passed on to another generation. Ramdas Abhiram das describes, "This (art of drawing Krishna) has been developed in the art department over many many years, and (our students) are getting a crash course in what we've learned."

The artists' enthusiasm for their work is apparent: "(painting) is such a special avenue for a devotee for expression, because you can start to see everything in relation to Krishna. Everyone walking by--'that would make a beautiful face for Krishna! Look at that cloth, Krishna could wear that as a turban!' or 'Oh, this beautiful garden--well, Krishna could be in there doing this and Radharani could be doing that. . .'

"It's a wonderful trick of absorption in Krishna, because you have that tendency as an artist--you're thinking, you're looking. . .This is totally Prabhupada's way: 'Dovetailing.' You are dovetailing all those propensities. And it does. All of a sudden, everything looks possible for Krishna, you start seeing this world as part of Krishna--how He fits in here. Of course, in Vrindavan, it's intensified.."

Their seminar received such an overwhelmingly positive response that this year's course is practically full. Cancellations do happen, however, so please write to artseminar@friendsofthebbt.org as soon as possible if you're interested in participating in the 2008 seminar--we will try to accommodate you.

A very big thank you to all members and Friends of the BBT--especially Gopal Bhatta dasa--for making this possible.

If you would be interested to help in sponsoring this valuable project, click here