Allison Atwill, Roshi, teaches with Pacific Zen Institute and leads Coral Moon Zen in Santa Barbara. She is a visual artist whose work emerges from an intimate and embodied conversation with koans. As she paints, the images–canyon wren, clouds, fox, iris–emerge out of the lived and dreamed field of the koan. The placement of the image in the painting, the medium, and even the size of the artwork are also an expression of her immersion in the koan. The way the pieces make themselves through and with her is an illustration of the way a koan can open your life when you keep company with it. Allison has taught art to children in Montecito for more than twenty years.
You can see one of Allison’s paintings, and read about her creative process and koans, in the first issue of Uncertainty Club.