Kazuaki Tanahashi is an artist and writer trained in Japan and active in the United States as well as a Fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science. He has taught East Asian calligraphy at numerous international conferences of calligraphy and lettering arts. As a painter, he is the pioneer of the genre of "one stroke painting" as well as the creator of multi-color ensos (Zen circles). Zen Mountain Monastery in the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York has hosted his brush workshops since 1986. It is offered here in print form.
"Making the enso - the Zen circle that conveys everything, the whole world, complete, the ultimate Zen symbol of emptiness - is kind of a practice. Ensos are traditionally done in sumi ink, black on white. When I first saw one of Kaz Tanahashi's color ensos, a breakthrough in the form, I put it on my must-have list. That began a long relationship with Kaz. He has come here three times to teach calligraphy and contributed a lot of work to the magazine. He did this enso especially for us as a cover for one of our Buddhist teachings issues. Actually, he did about ten and gave us our pick. This one used currant ink on black paper. I try to vary the traditions and time periods that our cover art comes from, and this was an opportunity to use a brilliant contemporary example of a traditional Zen form." –Liza Matthews