Zen Brush – Zen Heart

about this event

Zen Brush – Zen Heart

Weekend Meditative Zen Painting Retreat with Tiffani Gyatso

Join us for a unique weekend of meditative Zen painting, immersed in the tranquility of Pure Land Farms. 

This retreat is open to everyone with or without painting experience, but with an open heart to trust the mystery and simplicity of not-knowing and moving forward with the natural creativity of being alive in this moment. 

Master artist Tiffani Gyatso, who studied many years next to her Chinese Zen teacher Alok Hsu Kwang-han, will be leading this Zen painting experience which will include moments of silence and moments of dynamic movement with catharsis leading back to the silent Zen heart of being, the instant from where the Zen stroke will move onto the paper and into our lives.

Creating from emptiness is not only about painting—painting itself is the tip of the iceberg held up by an entire unseen mountain which is the awakened and present being. To access this, we begin our day with meditation and long walks, and breathing in the beauty of the moment. Our hearts come to be so full of simple beauty from being in nature, drinking tea silently, and appreciating each other’s existence so that painting comes spontaneously without thought.

At the end of the retreat, we will experience together the delicate, beautiful chemistry between Music and Zen painting: the teacher, together with musician and composer Simone Giuliani will create a personalized Zen painting merged with an instant, unique music composition tailored to each participant. Together, we will witness the magic of creating something from nothing through the simple thread of connecting to each other. 

Expressing oneself by starting from an empty and fully vibrating place inside our inner core gives a taste of incredible joy and freedom. You drop all expectations and allow what is unknown to the mind to manifest. One must trust the process and surrender in order to experience the vast possibilities of creativity. Anything that arises is welcome: sadness, fear, laughter, desire, dreams, joy. Instead of getting lost in the stories that these feelings are tied to, we will learn to allow as much space as possible between us and the dramas. Then it happens — your body is free of fear to express the energy of the emotions, and with acceptance they come onto the paper, or canvas. No struggle, no repression, no preferences — simply recognizing what is and moving from emptiness.

Participants will be given a special kit of Chinese brushes and rice paper. You are also welcome to bring your own brushes if you have them.

“The “ordinary heart or mind” is able to experience the simple grace and joy of living. War, violence, domination are carried out by the parts inside us that have a desire to be “extraordinary.” When we take to heart and truly understand that “what exists comes and returns to nothing,” including our own impermanence, life becomes precious and invaluable—for each of us and for all sentient beings.”

– Alok Hsu Kwang-han




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Accommodation options are available upon registration


This event is held in-person at Pure Land Farms.Covid test is required to attend. Before registering, you must agree to our Covid-19 protocols.READ PURE LAND FARMS COVID-19 GUIDELINES


Tiffani Gyatso is an artist from Brazil who focused her studies on the sacred expressions of art from different cultures. She specialized in traditional Tibetan Thangka painting, which she learned in India at the Norbulingka Institute from the years 2003-2006 and later furthered her studies at the Prince School of Traditional Arts in London where she studied sacred Geometry of the Middle East. Tiffani studied for many years with Chinese Zen teacher Alok Hsu Kwang-han, learning the art of Zen brush painting. Today she runs her own art retreat center at the Atelier YabYum at the mountains of Brazil and guides art groups to India and Nepal.