JAMIE WHYTE artist illustrator creative cartographer

Shaolin Murals

Mural project from 2010/2011.

I was friends with a disciple of Shaolin Grand Master Shi DeYang, who asked me to paint murals in the school he intended to open to teach Shaolin culture and gong-fu in the UK.

I spent around eight months painting the murals. I’ve always loved Chinese art, poetry and culture so it was a labour of love for me – and I was especially honoured to be working for one of the most venerable and famous cultural centres in China, if not the world.

The School opened with a visit from Shi DeYang himself, who blessed the School and an image of Buddha I’d painted with water sprinkled from a green sprig. The final image in the gallery shows Shi DeYang stood before the Buddha, and a small shrine displaying a photograph of his master Shi SuXi, who maintained the practices of Chan Buddhism and Shaolin gong-fu at the Temple during the Cultural Revolution, at great risk to his own safety.

Of all the mural projects I’ve undertaken, this is the one of which I am most proud.

© Jamie Whyte 2012


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