Chinese calligraphy on paper
In “wordless,” the artist’s use of strokes to create paintings is a remarkable technique that blurs the boundary between language and visual art. By breaking down Chinese characters into most basic components, strokes, the artist recontextualizes them as abstract forms, imbuing them with a new sense of beauty and meaning. Through this transformation, the artist frees the strokes from their rigid, communicative function, allowing them to take on new expressive potential.
As the strokes coalesce into dynamic and fluid shapes, the paintings convey a sense of motion and liveliness. The way the strokes interact with each other creates an illusion of movement, as if the forms were alive and writhing. Looking closely, one can see how the strokes work together to form the larger picture, resembling schools of fish darting through the water, waves crashing on the shore, or even parts of a larger, more abstract organism.
Despite the seemingly chaotic and unstructured nature of the strokes, there is a clear sense of intention behind the artist’s work. The use of different types of strokes and the density of their placement creates a sense of depth and dimensionality. This attention to detail results in a rich and complex visual experience that rewards close attention and contemplation.
The indistinct content of the paintings can be challenging for viewers, as it requires them to engage actively with the work, to unravel the meanings and symbolism embedded in the strokes. This process of interpretation can be both frustrating and exhilarating, much like the experience of reading a challenging text.
In comparing “wordless” to Xu Bing’s “A Book from the Sky,” the artist highlights the potential for the strokes to be developed and transformed in various media and forms. The strokes could be further refined and explored in calligraphy, sculpture, and other materials, allowing for an even greater range of artistic expression. The possibilities are endless, and the stroke as a fundamental element of Chinese writing is poised to inspire artists for years to come.