Video: Buddha statues appearing around Chicago

Photo: Indira Johnson

The Ten Thousand Ripples Project (TRP), a collaborative public art initiative, is now showing a collection of fiberglass Buddha statues made by artist Indira Johnson in ten Chicago-area neighborhoods, with community members choosing the locations for the statues. The idea behind the project is that, as Johnson puts it, “art can stimulate a discussion about peace, about violence, race, poverty, and social justice.”

For more on this project, please visit its website, as well as Johnson’s site. And click through to watch a video of Johnson explaining the project.



  1. arunlikhati says

    I first heard about this project through Rev. Patti Nakai's blog. She has a few posts about this project (such as here, here, here and here), and it's been helpful for me to learn about this project through the lens of an American Buddhist community leader on the ground in Chicago. It would be wonderful if Shambhala Sun were able to share Rev. Nakai's experience from the standpoint of a member of the Chicago Buddhist community. She is an extremely articulate teacher, and I have no doubt that Shambhala Sun readership would appreciate her perspective.

  2. berck says

    im personally offended by this. its a shame that the real artists who speak for all the same things as this woman are ridiculed and even arrested over trying to bring the same message to the city. the only way to truly speak out against the poverty, violence and racism in this city is if u have actually been a part of it and its sad that the real people who convey that real message are viewed as criminals or even "terrorists" for what they do. there have been thousands of dedicated artists over the last 25 years who will never recieve credit for the inspiration that they tried to bring poor communities for so long in this city and its a shame that the real people are instantaniously labeled as criminals for the mediums that they choose to use. the city has never asked anything from us, but while at the same time weve never asked anything for them that weve chosen to go out and even risk our lives just to bring some empowering color and creativity to those who suffer. all those who label us as graffiti vandals should look deep inside yourselves and really try to understand what it is that we do….. in placing these things all around the city she is doing nothing less than seeking recognition and fame for what she does. i hope in the coming years that people will grow to be more understanding and open minded. you might personally be offended by the artwork of someone else but that by no means should dictate that others cant be moved or empowered by the exact same thing… peace and love to you all