Artist Statement

 

I was born into an academic family in Beijing. My father is a Chinese ink painter, calligrapher, my mother is a film director, and both my grandparents worked in theatre set design. Growing up with my father in the communist public housing of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, which was shared by all academic staffs living together in equal circumstances, has had a fundamental influence on my  practice. It seeded a sense of equalitarianism between forms of art in me from a very early age. 

 

I have always been interested in the relationship between humanity and nature. Not until recent years did I become increasingly fascinated by how Taoist ideology of nature permeates through visual art, music, poetry, architecture and medicine amongst every aspect of Asian culture. The mastery of art is achieved by close study and observation in order to portray nature not only realistically but also emotionally. This vitalist conception of life- Natura Naturans (nature naturing), represents how Nature is understood as a constant flow of transformation that contains culture rather than a static objectified exterior, nature as artist. I believe this conception can potentially nourish in the language of contemporary art in a similar way as in classical art. I prefer working with time-based materials such as moving image, sound and printmaking that allows me to apply multiple layers over the printing process. In recent years I also started working with creative partners from other disciplines, mainly in computer science. Computation and algorithms interest me because they carry out the non-action of the subject/artist therefore it is a neutral way of revealing the conception of “Natura Naturans” or “zi-ran” in Chinese meaning “what-is-so-of-itself“. Technology is becoming the extension of our bodies to better conceive the world.  It is also used in my work as a tool to sublimate the “artificial” by speaking for the object. Through my work I hope to spark discussions on the perspective of the environment not as the resource but as the source of life.