Guanyin is the bodhisattva associated with compassion as venerated by East Asian Buddhists, usually as a female. The name Guanyin is short for Guanshiyin, which means “Observing the Sounds (or Cries) of the World”. She is also sometimes referred to as Guanyin Pusa (simplified Chinese: 观音菩萨; traditional Chinese: 觀音菩薩; pinyin: Guānyīn Púsà; literally “Bodhisattva Guanyin”). Some Buddhists believe that when one of their adherents departs from this world, they are placed by Guanyin in the heart of a lotus, and then sent to the western pure land of Sukhāvatī.
It is generally accepted among East Asian adherents that Guanyin originated as the Sanskrit Avalokiteśvara (अवलोकितेश्वर). Commonly known in English as the Mercy Goddess or Goddess of Mercy, Guanyin is also revered by Chinese Taoists (or Daoists) as an Immortal. However, in folk traditions such as Chinese mythology, there are other stories about Guanyin’s origins that are outside jatakas of Avalokiteśvara recorded in Buddhist sutras.
Lawrence Koh is an international multi-disciplinary artist, specializing in both visual arts and the performing arts. He has embarked on his artistic journey at a young age and acquired his Bachelor of Arts (Second Class Honours) from the LaSalle College of the Arts. Lawrence’s artistic specialties: sand animation art, designing, vocal, stage performances, theatre performances and acting for TV dramas, TV commercials, short films, corporate films and movies as the featuring talent.
Being one of the few artistes to enter the Singapore Armed Forces Music & Drama Company (SAF MDC), Lawrence received professional training as a performing artist and has performed in over 190 shows locally and internationally with SAF MDC alone. Notable performances include – Mindef National Day Observation Ceremony, Singapore ASEAN, National Day Parade, SAF Pride Day and international performances in Australia. Despite being a performing artist with SAF MDC, Lawrence also contributed his talents as a designer and stage manager and is still actively involving as a performing artist in concerts, corporate performances, musical theatres, TV and movie productions and also experimental theatre productions with local and international theatre companies.
Utilizing his skills as a visual artist and a performing artist, Lawrence narrates countless stories as a sand artist; utilizing the awe-inspiring combination of sand, music and light to bring audience of all age group on a surreal and imaginative journey into the world of sand art. During Lawrence’s sand art performances for local and international corporate events, theatre performances, TV performances and artistic collaborations, amazing sand art images evolve right before the audience’s very eyes. Lawrence was also invited by “Brand Now Asia” (one of the leading PR and Marketing company in Thailand) to perform a special sand art performance for the official launch of “MSH International” in Thailand, with Lawrence’s sand art performance being the highlight of the evening. Lawrence’s sand animation art can be seen regularly in official launch, prestigious awards ceremony, annual awards, television shows, commercials & documentaries, dinner & dance, theatre productions, international corporate events as well as local events. Lawrence is also part of National Arts Council’s “Arts for All” programme and was featured on “Awaken” magazine’s exclusive Vesak Day 2013 interview with Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery.
As a sand artist, Lawrence found delight in collaborations with artists of various other disciplines (e.g. dancers, DJ, live musicians etc). He was given the honour to have a special collaboration with the renowned Bhaskar’s Arts Academy during the major theatre production “CHAKRA”, featuring a captivating combination of Indian dance, ballet, live Indian music and sand art. The performance was graced by the presence of former president Mr. S.R Nathan, with the performance tickets sold out completely while receiving standing ovation from satisfied audiences and VIPs. Lawrence’s theatre performance collaboration with Bhaskar’s Arts Academy continues with “Nalanda” at the Singapore Esplanade with the performance proudly archived by NLB.
Amidst the sand art journey for Singapore and international performances, Lawrence was interviewed as the featuring artist on Singapore Mediacorp Okto channel’s “Arts.Music.Performances” and performed his original sand art “SoLuna”. Lawrence’s sand art also captured the attention of Singapore Mediacorp’s “Artless Travelled Season 2” – an international TV documentary about the lesser seen art forms of Asia with Lawrence being featured as the Singapore sand artist that proudly represents one of Singapore’s unique art forms on the show, together with special performances and a TV biography interview. Lawrence was also featured on Starhub E-City’s television commercial as a sand artist. Apart from documentaries and commercials, Lawrence is proud to be the sand artist for Mediacorp Channel 5 and Suria Channel’s telemovie – “Remembering SARS”; with Lawrence’s sand art being the highlight of the telemovie portraying stories of Singaporean’s battle against SARS.