第80期 抽象艺术在中国(2012)

第80期 抽象艺术在中国(2012年)

学术主持:李旭

主题:余友涵 梁铨 施慧 祁海平 谭平 丁乙 黄渊青 陈光武

新作:赵峥嵘 冷军 张瑛 傅中望 商成祥 郝世明 覃士荣 孙恩道

Issue No. 80(2012)

Theme: Abstract Art in China

Acadenic Host: Li Xu

A.T: Yu Youhan, Liang Quan, Shi Hui, Qi Haiping, Tan Ping, Ding Yi, Huang Yuanqing, Chen Guangwu

A.N: Zhao Zhengrong, Leng Jun, Zhang Yin, Fu Zhongwang, Shang Cheng Xiang, Hao Shiming, Tan Shirong,  Sun Endao

80

抽象艺术在中国

Abstract Art in China

 

文 : 李旭   TEXT:LI XU

 

一、审美渊源

在以具象形式为主体的当代艺术大行其道的今天,很多人都已忘记了抽象艺术的历史意义和现实价值。抽象艺术曾是“为艺术而艺术”的极致,是艺术自身价值最大化的张扬表现。从抽象艺术诞生之日起,艺术就可以不必试图再现和表现客观物质世界,转而营造与现实平行的主观精神世界,与现实“缠绕”和“交叉”的关系,变成了“平行”关系。回顾现代艺术发展史后,我们可以说,没有抽象艺术就没有观念艺术的独立性、自足性,抽象艺术的诞生为当代艺术理论奠定了重要的基础。

从康定斯基的第一张抽象画算起,西方抽象艺术的诞生已经超过一个世纪,而中国抽象艺术还非常年轻。古代中国没有抽象艺术,但中国传统艺术的许多门类里都有对抽象美的欣赏传统。那些欣赏抽象美的行为、心理和文字,在书法、戏曲、园林、家具等文化遗产之中普遍存在。古人所欣赏的书法笔画、太湖石、大理石等类似“抽象”形式的美感,基本上发源于道家哲学。世界上没有任何一个国家像中国那样对林林总总的奇石情有独钟,这种审美取向也和道家“天人合一”、“道法自然”的理念有着千丝万缕的联系。老子《道德经》中“大音希声”、“大象无形”、“大成若缺”、“大盈若冲”、“唯道集虚”等名言,可以充分证明道家对“空”、“无”、“虚”的推崇,这是一种极其特殊的价值观,既为后世对非具象美感的欣赏提供了理论基础,也造就了汉民族文化传统中崇尚简约、概括、象征、隐喻的审美性格。

在唐代书法巅峰时代诞生的狂草,更是中华美学的异数。汉字的雏形甲骨文本来是象形文字,在这种以象形原则为基础而造就的文字体系中,居然能够演化出几乎丧失辨识度的书写方式,进而成为中国书法史上难以逾越的审美经典,这不能不说是世界文化史上的特例。

在历代文人所推崇的艺术标准中,对“不似”的议论是令人印象深刻的。在南齐谢赫的“六法”之中,“气韵生动”排名第一,而“应物象形”排名第三。北宋文豪苏轼尝言:“论画以形似,见与儿童邻。”元代巨匠倪瓒曾说:“逸笔草草,不求形似。”现代国画大师齐白石更以“似与不似之间”作为风格自白。由于历代文人都贬斥过度的形似,于是中国的视觉艺术很早就放弃了对极端化写实技巧的刻意追求,转而寻觅表达方式上的“气”、“韵”和“意”,进而“得意忘象”。

道家哲学和书法美学,是中国当代抽象艺术得以滥觞的心理基础和视觉根源,更是中国抽象艺术在当代国际艺坛的立身之本。

二、演进历程

西方抽象艺术对中国早期现代艺术的影响,始于1930年代的民国时期,当时,“决澜社”中的部分艺术家已经开始了对纯粹视觉形式的探索和实验。但是,抗日战争的全面爆发,迫使文艺界立刻投身于救亡的宣传洪流,写实主义的艺术形式因其通俗易懂和喜闻乐见,永远都是政治宣传和群众动员的有力工具,而“玩弄形式”、“脱离时代”的抽象艺术显然是不合时宜的。从那时起,中国历史上几乎每10年就会有一次巨大的变动,对思想、学术、文艺的积累和传承都造成了不少消极影响,抽象艺术在中国内地的学术线索也因此一再中断,时间长达半个世纪之久。

1970年代末及1980年代初期,随着思想解放运动的萌生,中国内地的文化艺术界对抽象艺术又开始了重新的认识。但是,由于极“左”思想在意识形态方面的顽固遗存,抽象艺术在相当长的一段历史时期内被批判为“资产阶级的腐朽、反动艺术形式”,而“抽象派”、“自我表现”、“形式主义”这种词汇则被当时的极“左”势力当做匕首和投枪抛来掷去,从事形式主义探索,作品中带有抽象意味的艺术家也屡次遭受不公正的责难与打击。在“文革”中后期,吴大羽、李青萍等老一代艺术家曾以地下方式持续抽象、半抽象探索,他们所作出的贡献是不应被忘记的。

“85新潮”席卷大江南北,抽象艺术的实践也达到了前所未有的高潮,今天,当我们回顾这段历史时,会发现不少50岁以上的知名前卫艺术家在当时都有过短暂的、耐人寻味的“抽象时期”。由此可知,抽象艺术在当时显然是被他们当做反叛与颠覆僵化艺术体制的工具了,那时的抽象创作大多数是策略性的,只是手段,不是目的。在众多抽象、半抽象的艺术探索中,余友涵、李山、王克平、葛鹏仁、周长江、张健君、仇德树、孟禄丁、尹齐、于振立、丁乙、王易罡、顾黎明、张方白、刘鸣、管策、王毅、江海等艺术家在语言方面的探索为后来者提供了有价值的坐标。1980年代中后期,有三件事从一定程度上说明了官方艺术机构对待抽象艺术的态度:其一,是旅法华人抽象艺术家赵无极被浙江美术学院邀请客座执教;其二,是西班牙抽象艺术家塔皮埃斯的个人画展在中国美术馆开幕;其三,是周长江的抽象作品在全国美展上获得银奖。

90年代以来的20年间,中国内地的抽象艺术创作呈现出渐趋繁荣的发展态势,散落在全国各地的艺术家开始介入抽象、半抽象的语言实践,许多较为独立的个体风格也在多年来的探索中逐步建立。北方艺术家中,于振立、闫振铎、谭平、祁海平、白明、张国龙、申伟光、伊灵、阎秉会、张羽、胡又笨、刘旭光、路青、陈光武、徐红明、周洋明、孙凯、尹戈等人是其中较为突出的代表。南方艺术家中,丁乙、秦一峰、申凡、施慧、傅中望、仇德树、陈心懋、陈墙、徐虹、李磊、李华生、杨述、王川、刘子建、梁铨、赵葆康、潘微、黄渊青、曲丰国、曹小冬、张浩、王远、燕飞翔、王燮达等人则形成了比北方艺术家们更为庞大的创作群体,显示出不可忽视的实力。旅居海外多年的艺术家如江大海、苏笑柏、朱金石、孟禄丁、沈忱、马树青、李向阳、陈若冰等成熟个体纷纷归国发展,更为这一繁荣景象增添着全新活力。值得一提的是,上海作为一个有着殖民文化传统的城市,在抽象艺术的发展上异军突起,在80年代初之后的30年发展历程中,专门从事抽象创作以及先后介入抽象风格的艺术家已经超过30位,从而不容置疑地在事实上确立了上海“抽象艺术首都”的地位。自1997年“无形的存在——上海抽象艺术展”之后,众多抽象艺术联展在上海遍地开花,其中以曾在上海美术馆连续举办四届的“形而上”抽象展最为著名。

时至今日,抽象艺术已经在全国各地渐趋活跃,各种名目的展示活动此起彼伏,从北京到深圳,从画廊到美术馆,以抽象为主题的展览、研讨和出版活动方兴未艾。

三、当下问题

1. 形式主义的现实困境

抽象艺术不是一个已经完成其历史使命的流派,抽象其实是人类认识世界和表达思想的一种基础语言。对视觉形式语言的探索,在理论上是没有极限的,但我们必须清楚的是,并不是所有的探索和发现都具备艺术价值,独特的也并不一定就是杰出的。近10年来,尽管抽象艺术家数量有增无减,展示活动层出不穷,但选择抽象应该是有条件的,坚持抽象道路更需要坚忍不拔的意志。当下的中国抽象艺术探索仅仅是起步,对形式的探索和实验在深度和广度方面都还十分有限。其实,抽象世界远比具象世界宽广,形式语言的自由度和可能性也更大,但宽广不等于没有界限,自由也并不等于没有难度。形式如果最后成了专利发明和绝技炫耀,其内在思想和观念的深度必定大打折扣,进而成为在理性和感性层面上都无法打动观者,无法令人产生共鸣的,仅仅具有装饰功能的商品。

2. 观念探索的视觉依据

在视觉艺术领域,任何观念的存在都需要视觉形式作为佐证。观念性的抽象艺术在中国的发展尚处于起步阶段,创作的视野还不够开阔,选择的手段也还比较有限。在这个问题上,需要被一再强调的常识是:观念的存在,其目的并不是消解形式。观念性的抽象应当是具有独特语汇的抽象方式,语汇的绝对重要性是毋庸讳言的。另外,所谓的观念性抽象并不只是“极简”或“极繁”,风格上的“单纯”也绝不能与“简单”画等号,“抽象艺术”的疆域其实非常宽广,但迄今为止的中国内地抽象艺术所涉及的领域还仅仅局限于绘画、雕塑和装置作品的范围之内,抽象风格的摄影作品仅有少量的零星个案,而抽象的录像、电影与表演等形式的作品则非常罕见。任何艺术观念的探索如果失去了充分的视觉依据,其观念只能成为一具干瘪的空壳。

3. 学术概念的模糊与颠覆

随着抽象艺术的逐渐兴起,当下已有越来越多的批评家和策展人开始介入抽象领域,有关抽象的展览、研讨和出版活动此起彼伏,这是毋庸置疑的好事。但不容忽视的是,有两种声音使本来清晰的学术观念日益模糊甚至颠覆,却是令人担忧的。一种声音源自原本擅长写实和表现,后来转向抽象创作的艺术家及其代言人,他们认为只要偏离学院写实或传统具象的风格者皆可被定义为广义上的“抽象”,其实这种类型的作品更确切的定义应该是“表现”、“象征”或者“意象”。另一种声音则对中国抽象艺术采取完全否定的态度,其代表性观点认为抽象发源于西方,中国的抽象艺术只是翻版和拷贝而已,其立论点的致命错误在于混淆了“抽象”、“抽象主义”和“抽象艺术”三者之间的深层内涵。

4. 商业化与庸俗化的危险

在抽象艺术逐步进入市场,进而成为中产阶级的趣味所在和消费重点以后,抽象艺术将会渐渐面对被市场异化的命运。因为抽象艺术对现代家居环境具备理想的装饰功能,也因为购藏者对抽象艺术的盲目跟风和不求甚解,艺术市场上就不可避免地会出现鱼龙混杂的局面。画廊、博览会上已经出现大量粗制滥造的“伪抽象”,不少成名的抽象艺术家们由于订单不断,也产生了不求进取、消极守成的趋势。抽象艺术诞生之初,是惊世骇俗的举动,是对陈腐艺术观念的反叛,而杜绝商业化与庸俗化的消极影响,应该是每一位抽象艺术家执著的个人操守,如果艺术家们对这一危险视而不见,“抽象”概念本身在中国内地的未来前途是不容乐观的。

四、未来之路

尽管抽象艺术并非肇始于中国,尽管中国并没有抽象艺术的传统,但由于传统审美意识中积淀着对抽象美感的欣赏经验,中国当代艺术家们认识和领悟抽象艺术精髓的能力是非常优秀的。由于书法、园林和戏曲等传统艺术形式中普遍存在着“准抽象”的视觉遗产,中国艺术家们在象征符号、意象转换方面也有着广泛的选择余地,在寻找原创性母题方面,中国博大精深的历史资源更为当代艺术提供了许多天然的优越感。

在内外环境已趋成熟的今天,建立成熟的“中国抽象”艺术体系已经有必要成为当代艺术家们的话题。“中国抽象”不是符号与口号的机械堆砌,更不是“唐人街文化”的异国卖弄,“中国抽象” 应当渗透着本土文明的内在思辨,表达出华夏民族的审美情怀。以宏大的人文背景为依托,以丰富的视觉样式为依据,“中国抽象”的发展空间不可限量。以道家哲学为灵魂,以书法美学为法度,以观念性与形式感并重的方式不断探寻东方的形而上精神,也应当是“中国抽象”的必由之路。

 

2012年10月23日

 

I. Asethetic Origin

In a world where prevails the contemporary art with the representational form as its subject, a lot of people have forgotten the historical meaning and realistic value of the abstract art, which used to the ultimate of “art for art’s sake” and the maximized high-profile manifestation of the self value of art. Since the birth of the Abstract Art, art has been set free from attempting to represent and present and objective material world. In turn it tries to create a subjective spiritual world parallel to the reality, resulting in a “parallel” instead of the “intertwining” and “intersecting” relationship with the reality. We can safely say after retrospecting the development of modern art that there is no independence and self-sufficiency of the conceptual art without the abstract art, the birth of which has laid a significant foundation of the theory of contemporary art.

Since the first painting of Kandinsky, the western abstract art has enjoyed a history of more than a century while the Chinese counterpart is still learning baby steps. The traditional Chinese art has long enjoyed the appreciation of the abstract beauty in many disciplines despite the lack of “abstract art” in ancient China. The behavior, psychology and words of appreciating the abstract beauty can be easily found in the cultural legacies like calligraphy, traditional Chinese operas, gardens and parks, furnitures, etc. Generally speaking, such appreciation of beauty in “abstract” forms can be traced back to Taoism. There’s not another country in the world that can match China in its obsession with the variety of rare stones, an aesthetic orientation that cannot be separated from the Taoist theories of “unity of heaven and men” and “nature as the ultimate way”. What’s more, the Taoist inclination towards the “void”, the “empty” and “nihility” can be adequately verified by the famous sayings like “the great sounds border on silence”, “the huge forms tend to be intangible”,  “the most perfect presents itself as flawed” and “the greatest appears to be the most humble”. This extremely particular value not only provided a theoretical foundation of appreciating the non-representational beauty for the later generations, but also built up the aesthetic characters of simplicity, epitomization, symbol and metaphor in the cultural tradition of the Han Nationality.

The extremely wild scribble style that was born at the peak of calligraphy of the Tang Dynasty was indeed a bizarrerie case in the Chinese aesthetics. Oracle as the origin of the Chinese characters belongs to the category of hieroglyphics – a system of characters and words based on pictographs. Therefore it’s a truly remarkable exception in the world cultural history that somehow an almost unrecognizable calligraphic style evolved from this system and in turn became the insurmountable classic in the history of Chinese calligraphy.

Among the most esteemed artistic standards of generations of scholars, the most impressive falls in the discussion of “not alike”. According to the “Six Criteria” by Xie He of the South Qi Dynasty, the most important criterion should be the “artistic conception and vividness” while the “likeness to the objects” ranked the third. The great writer Su Shi (of the North Song Dynasty) once remarked: “it’s only in the levels of children that drawings are judged by their likeness to the objects”. The great artist Ni Zan from the Yuan Dynasty advocated a departure from the pursuit of similarity in form or appearance. And the modern master in painting Qi Baishi even made a confession of his style as between “the similarity and dissimilarity”. Since the excessive similarity in forms and appearances was condemned by generations of scholars and artists, the Chinese visual art had long given up on the deliberate pursuit of extreme realistic techniques, instead they turned to find the “qi”, “charm” and “spirit” of the way of expression, resulting in the precedence of the spirit over the image.

The Taoist philosophy and the calligraphic aesthetics are the psychological foundation and visual origin for the growth of Chinese contemporary abstract art as well as the root for Chinese abstract art to establish itself on the international stage.

 

II. Evolution Process

The influence of the western abstract art on the early Chinese modern art started in the 1930s when some artists from The Storm Society (Jue Lan She) had already began their exploration and experiments of the pure visual forms. But with the outburst of the Anti-Japanese War necessitating artists participating in the propaganda of the salvation of China, the realistic art forms were considered to be the more powerful tool of political propaganda and mass mobilization due to its simplicity and popularity while the abstract art inappropriate, for its dallying with forms and out of sync with the time. Since then, China has gone through several a social quake every 10 years, imposing quite some negative effect on the build-up and inheritance of ideology, academics and art, breaking off repeatedly the academic clues of abstract art in mainland China for over half a century.

With the budding of Ideological Emancipation starting from the end of 1970s and the beginning of 1980s, the culture and art circle of mainland China began anew their cognition of the abstract art. But with the ultra-leftism’s influence on ideology still going strong, the abstract art for rather a long time was condemned to be “the decadence of the bourgeoisie” and “the reactionary art form” while words like “abstractionist”, “self-expression” and “formalism” were used by the leftists for smearing and artists who engaged in the exploration of formalism and whose works came with abstract implication were unfairly accused and attacked time and again. During the latter period of the Cultural Revolution, some artists like Wu Dayu and Li Qingping kept on their abstract and semi-abstract exploration in an underground way, and such contribution shouldn’t be forgotten.

The practice of the abstract art reached an unprecedented peak when the “New Wave 85’” was sweeping all over China. In retrospect, quite a lot of famed avant-garde artists who are over 50 had gone through a brief and intriguing “abstract period” during that time. It was obvious that the abstract art was used by them as a tool of rebellion against the stiffed art system while most of the creative works of the abstract art were kind of strategic, serving as a means instead of an end. Among these abstract and semi-abstract artistic exploration, valuable coordinates in the exploration of languages were provided for descendants by artists like Yu Youhan, Li Shan, Wang Keping, Ge Pengren, Zhou Changjiang, Zhang Jianjun, Qiu Deshu, Meng Luding, Yin Qi, Yu Zhenli, Ding Yi, Wang Yigang, Gu Liming, Zhang Fangbai, Liu Ming, Guan Ce, Wang Yi, Jiang Hai, etc. During the late 1980s, the official art institutions’ attitude towards the abstract art was somehow reflected through three events: first being the invitation of Zhao Wuji, a Chinese abstract artist residing in France, by Zhejiang Art Institute to be the guest lecturer, second the opening of the Solo Exhibition of Spanish abstract painter Tapies at the National Art Museum of China, and lastly the silver medal conferred to the abstract work by Zhou Changjiang at the National Art Exhibition.

Since the 1990s, the creation of abstract art in mainland China has been ever on the rise, with artists scattered all over the country got involved in the abstract and semi-abstract language practice and quite a lot independent individual styles gradually established through years of exploration. From the north, the distinguished representatives are Yu Zhenli, Yan Zhenduo, Tan Ping, Qi Haiping, Bai Ming, Zhang Guolong, Shen Weiguang, Yi Ling, Yan Binghui, Zhang Yu, Hu Youben, Liu Xuguang, Lu Qing, Chen Guangwu, Xu Hongming, Zhou Yangming, Sun Kai and Yin Ge while among artists from the south, Ding Yi, Qin Yifeng, Shen Fan, Shi Hui, Fu Zhongwang, Qiu Deshu, Chen Xinmao, Chen Qiang, Xu Hong, Li Lei, Li Huasheng, Yang Shu, Wang Chuan, Liu Zijian, Liang Quan, Zhao Baokang, Pan Wei, Huang Yuanqing, Qu Fengguo, Cao Xiaodong, Zhang Hao, Wang Yuan, Yan Feixiang and Wang Xieda had together formed an even bigger creative group than their northern counterparts with a force to be reckoned with. Artists who had been residing overseas for many years, such as Jiang Dahai, Su Xiaobai, Zhu Jinshi, Meng Luding, Shen Chen, Ma Shuqing, Li Xiangyang, Chen Ruobing had come back in succession, infusing the prosper with brand-new energy. What’s worth mentioning is shanghai as a city with colonial culture tradition made a sudden rise in the development of the abstract art, turning out more than 30 artists who specially engaged in the creation of abstract art and dabbled in the abstract style in the 30 years of development since the beginning of the 1980s, thus establishing the unquestionable status of Shanghai as “the capital of abstract art”. Since “The Intangible Existence – The Abstract Art Exhibition of Shanghai” in 1997, a great many group exhibitions flourished all over Shanghai, among which the most famous one was “The Metaphysical” Abstract Exhibition that had been held successively for 4 times at the Shanghai Art Museum.

Up till today, the abstract art has become more and more alive all over China, with a variety of exhibitions coming one after another, and the heat still rising over exhibitions, discussions and publications centered on the abstract art from Beijing to Shenzhen and from galleries to museums.

 

III. Problems of the Moment

1. The reality predicament of the formalism

The abstract art is not a genre that has already finished its historical mission, and abstraction is actually a basic language of human beings to know the world and express ideas. Theoretically speaking, there is no limit in the exploration of languages in visual forms, but what we must make clear is that not all explorations and discoveries considered to be artistically valuable – uniqueness doesn’t necessarily mean excellence. For the past 10 years, with the ever rising numbers of abstract artists and exhibitions, the choice of abstraction still should come with conditions, requiring more perseverance and grittiness in the pursuit of this art. Right now the Chinese abstract art is still a toddler in its exploration, quite limited in the depth and width of the exploration and experiment of forms. Actually the abstract world is much more vast and deep than the representational world, the freedom and possibility of form languages much bigger, but extensiveness doesn’t equal limitlessness, and freedom doesn’t come without difficulties. If forms eventually become a patent and technique for boasting, the depth of its inner thoughts and ideas will be greatly reduced, thus failing to touch the viewers from both the perspectives of reason and sensibility, producing only commodities with a decorative function without actually touching people.

2. Visual basis for the exploration of concepts

In the field of visual art, the existence of any concept needs to be verified by visual forms. The development of the conceptual abstract art in China is still in the beginning, with less open horizon for creation and limited means for choice. The common sense that needs to be brought up again and again on this issues is the existence of concepts, the aim of which is not to dissolve forms. The conceptual abstraction should be an abstract approach with unique language, the absolute significance of which cannot be stressed more. What’s more, the so-called conceptual abstraction is not just “extreme simplicity” or “extreme complication”, and “simplicity” in style does not equal “simpleness”. The territory of “the abstract art” is vast indeed, whereas up till today the abstract art in China has only covered painting, sculpture and devices with few individual cases of photographic works of abstract style and extremely rare works of abstract video, films and performances. Once the valid visual proof is lost for the exploration of any artistic concept, that concept will only end up to be a shrivelled corpse

3. The obscurity and subversion of the academic concept

With the rise of the abstract art, more and more critics and curators started to get involved in the field, and the heat still rising over exhibitions, discussions and publications centered on the abstract art, which are undoubtedly good things to see. But what cannot be ignored is that two voices have obscured and even subverted the once-clear academic concept, which is quite alarming. One of the voices came from artists and representatives who used to be good at realism and expression and then turned to the abstract creation. They thought that anything that takes a departure from the academic realism or the traditional representational style could be generally defined as “the abstract”, whereas the more accurate definition for such genre should be “expression”, “symbol” or “image”. The other voice took on the attitude of total denial towards the Chinese abstract art, condemning it to be a mere copycat since the abstraction originated from the west. The fatal error of the argument is that it confuses the deep connotations of “abstraction”, “abstractionism” and “abstract art”.

4. The danger of commercialization and vulgarization

The abstract art will be confronted with the fate of alienation by the market when it makes its entrance into the market and in turn becomes the interest and focus of consumption of the middle class. The ideal decorative function of the abstract art for the modern home environment in addition to collectors’ blind pursuit and superficial understanding of the abstract art, resulted in an inevitable varied jumble in the art market. The shoddy “pseudo-abstraction” is now surging in great quantities in galleries and exhibitions, while the established abstract artists also lost their enterprising spirit and inclined towards conservatism since they’ve got countless orders incoming. The abstract art was a world-astounding event at the beginning of its birth, a rebellion against the stale artistic concepts. The ability to resist the negative effect of commercialization and vulgarization should be the integrity that every single abstract artist sticks to. And if they ignore such threat, the concept of “abstract” won’t be blessed with a bright future here in mainland China.

 

IV. The Road in the Future

Though the abstract art did not originate from China nor does China have the tradition of the abstract art, the contemporary artists of China possess an outstanding capability to understand the essence of the abstract art, thanks to the centuries-old appreciation of the abstract beauty by the traditional aesthetics. Because of the general existence of the “quasi-abstract” visual legacies in calligraphy, gardens and parks and traditional Chinese operas, Chinese artists are granted with a wide variety of choices in symbols and transformation of images,  and the profound historical resources of China also provided for the contemporary art  a great deal of natural superiority when it comes to searching for original motifs.

It has become an essential topic for contemporary artists to build a mature artistic system of the “Chinese abstraction” when the interior and exterior environments have reached maturity. Instead of being a mechanical piling of symbols and slogans or the showing off of the “Chinatown culture”, the “Chinese abstraction” should be saturated with the inner speculation of the native culture to express the Chinese aesthetics. With the vast humanistic background and rich visual forms as the basis, the development of the “Chinese abstraction” shall see no boundary. The inevitable course for the “Chinese abstraction” should be the constant exploration of the oriental metaphysical spirit while focusing both on concepts and forms, with Taoist philosophy as its soul, the aesthetics of calligraphy its standards.

 

Written on Oct. 23, 2012

 

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