佛光緣美術館成立至今即將邁入30年，從一個館到目前(2022年)全球共有27個分館遍及五大洲。因為寺廟裡有美術館，佛光山跟非常多的的藝術家成為好朋友，旅居紐西蘭的Keith Morant便是其中一位，不僅跟紐西蘭佛光山法師們學習更多佛教義理，甚至將105件的重要創作捐給佛光山，透過當地住持滿信法師促成了這本典藏作品集《生命之歌─Keith Morant專輯》的出版因緣。
Praise for the Song of Life
Chief Curator, Fo Guang Yuan Art Gallery︱ Ven. Ru Chang
Fo Guang Yuan Art Gallery is about to enter 30 years since its establishment. From the first gallery to the present (year 2022), there are now 27 branch galleries in the world covering five continents. Because there is an art gallery in the temple, Fo Guang Shan has become good friends with many artists. Keith Morant, who currently lives in New Zealand, is one of them. Not only has he learned Buddhist principles from the venerables of Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Temple New Zealand, he has also donated 105 of his creative artworks to Fo Guang Shan. Through the assistance of FGS Temple New Zealand’s abbot, Venerable Man Shin, the publication of the collection, "The Song of Life - Keith Morant Album," was created.
With more than 60 years of career in the art of creating, Keith Morant possessed a unique view on art creation. He believes that when human beings are elevated from the material level to the spiritual level, art will inevitably become a part of the nourishment, but the key lies in the creator's proper understanding and physical experience of living in this universe. He felt very fortunate to have taken on the learning of Buddhism when he was faced with the obstacle to his creation. Through studying Buddhism and meditation, he was able to deeply experience the five aggregates of the human body, and the true meaning of "selflessness" in Buddhism. Because of his encounter with the Dharma, his creative works have transcended his past and are now better than ever.
As long as you have seen Keith Morant's works, you will be attracted by the joy, enthusiasm and agility emanating from his works. With the guidance of the Dharma and his sensitivity to sound, he realized that everything has a note to it. So, the note-like codes spring up in every piece of his work. Whether sorrow or joy, all is filled with a rhythm. Every piece of his work is like a song, one after another just like the melodies of life!
Venerable Master Hsing Yun once said, "Music can express the emotions of the human mind. A sacred song, or a devout Buddhist hymn, often elevates the human mind to a holy realm." In 1953, the Venerable Master even preached the Dharma through music, sublimating his faith through singing. Venerable Master founded the art gallery because of "Boundless Aesthetics", and by propagating Buddhism through music and art, he demolished the barriers of language, race, and country. The world has become a better place because of Humanistic Buddhism!
Before the publication of this album, Keith Morant passed away peacefully with the blessings of his family and friends, successfully completing this cycle of his life. After the epidemic, these works will be exhibited in several countries in commemoration of him as we offer our blessings.