The Five Buddhas

“Many of the ingredients used to create incense have been used in the art of painting and were part of the first experiments in photography. They are also common among the world’s religious practices. In each tradition, the materials are used in a process of revealing for praying, purifying a site, a person or for sacred sites and rituals. During an in situ intervention, the carbonization of materials produces a bloom in both time and setting, affording the participant the opportunity to reconsider the place or the image in a context of impermanence.”

This is from the press release for a project we organized back in 2012 for French Canadian Artist Yves O’Reilly. Yves uses resins, gums and herbs to make aromas and creates in situ installations in which one can immerse oneself.

On this particular occasion depicted in the video dozens of bees came and congregated under the platform where the incense was burning and rolled in the powder. The event took place at David Brown’s Hay House in Essex, CT where a Buddhist stupa has been built.

Yves also built an installation at the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art in Staten Island, NY for the project.

If you’d like to learn more about Yves O’Reilly, please visit his website at

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