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The Silk Shadow of Chora-topia

Author: Xia Kejun Translator: Serein Liu 2015

The Grammar of Silk Language

Silkworm can be seen as a language of nature. The artwork created along with silkworms not only involves human activity but features nature’s vitality and strength as well. This type of creation process has helped to generate natural elements and made them become art. The creation, out of the inherent logic, is unexpected and accidental. The definition of ‘wisdom’ in Chinese culture usually encompasses that individuals should stand out from the physicals and let nature dominate. It could be said that the intention of nature is to make its power and potentials to be found everywhere. Nature itself does not exist in a regular form. Instead, it grows and breeds freely. Generated and transforming in various circumstances, nature reflects metamorphosis in a flexible way unlike the regularity of human beings. And perhaps, silkworm is the best example to demonstrate nature’s breeding capability.

How to turn natural objects into artwork? Or how can artwork accept and apply natural objects? Artificial objects normally tend to be by design, while the natural ones feature nature itself without any human involvement. Once nature becomes the core of art, then the artwork created would certainly be regarded as a brand-new ‘gift’. More specifically, the newborn ‘gift’ created by human from natural objects is neither an artificially manufactured artwork nor a completely natural object. Instead, it is a ‘gift’.

Chinese contemporary art is being expected to be presented as a ‘gift’, since ‘gift’ might be a more common description in terms of art. ‘Gift’ comes from the future and brings us a new world by surpassing individual artistic pattern and the relativity of culture and history. It even welcomes a new world, pointing out the future.  

Liang applies silkworm into his art creation and has managed to help nature to present the ‘gift’. Maybe, it will help us to find a way to surmount modern crisis. It could be the method to make the natural elements be the medium.

The life of silkworm has awakened the ideas and imagination of art and silk, which certainly brings art back to nature and demonstrates the homeland for human beings as well.

Liang, an artist focusing on the world of silkworm, has lived in the mountain area in Zhejiang Province for 25 years. Regarding the life process of silkworm (which includes the alterations in terms of physical shape, sound, smell, movements and so forth) as the creation medium and source, the artist leaves silk, cocoons and moths on his sculptures, paintings, photographs and videos, which certainly helps the artworks to be unique in a way. The length of all the silk that has been produced by Liang’s silkworms could even circle the earth for several times.

How does the silkworm become a ‘gift’? How does the silkworm become an inspiration and a language of art?

Silkworm possesses self-produced grammar. By presenting the lexicology, syntax and tense of silkworm life process, Liang has structured a new language as a ‘gift’. In the meantime, he has weaved a piece of natural and infra-mince veil, and created the art of ‘silk meditation’.

During decades of art practice, Liang has formed and concluded his ‘six principles’ for art creation:

(1) Rebuild the relationship of human and nature through the interaction.
(2) Comprehend Zhuangzi’s idea of ‘controversy’, and sense the implied philosophy of ‘I am a silkworm’.
(3) Set up the connections between the natural features of silkworm and the contingency of Zen to generate a fusion among ‘silk’, ‘idea’ and ‘Zen’.
(4) Create the integration of art and science during the silkworm-raising process. Appreciate art with an insight of lives and see science in an artistic way.
(5) Let nature reflect itself while art observes on nature.
(6) Build up chora-topia by observing the macroscopic world through a microscopic way.

Zhejiang Province, where Liang lives, is the home of silk. In 1988, he had a sudden impulse to create art by using silkworm: ‘The rain stopped. A gust of dim light, coming through the window in the hall, falls on the dried cocoons which are stapled on the machine-made silk. The overlapping shades and light are silvering and seem lively.’ (Dried cocoons refer to the cocoons which are baked after being dead.) Since then, he has indulged his passion into the world of silk and named the relevant works as Nature Series. This series embodies his long artistic journey back to nature.

Liang’s solo Yuan (Back to Origin) was exhibited at ShanghART Gallery in September, 2014. A sense of movement and stillness, visibility and invisibility was produced to give a new interpretation of ‘origin’. The exhibition was meant to expand the meaning of the origin of silk and to discover the origin of god, life and Nirvana.

Liang manages to let silkworm speak its own language and keeps its life to be written down. A more direct natural transformation refers to spinning and wrapping. Silkworm grows and weaves its cocoon, but it might be trapped by itself in a way. Liang does research about morphology from an aspect of art and aesthetics. He finds out the possibility of a life language which might have been neglected or have not been discovered by silkworm raisers and scientists. It is Liang who places silkworms on the metal, glass and even human bodies.

The syntax transformation of the silk language can be traced from his exhibition at ShanghART this time: he started with silkworms and turned his attention to fragments. The silkworms in his works gradually become incomplete shadows and seem like Chinese characters. The silk, voicing the universe and heaven, becomes a chora-topia among the floating clouds and safeguards the veil of nature.

The Yuan (Origin) of Nature

Nature is holy. Its sanctity refers to the capability of growing and reproducing. However, the development of science and technology has generated human being’s greed to rule nature. And eventually, it might contribute to the vanish of humanity, and nature may not survive. Then how to help our nature to recover? How to let nature speak for itself? Introspection is needed, considering the technology development and human’s desires today.

Self-roped and Pitfall reflect Liang’s deep insight into the natural laws of silkworm’s life process: fed with white mulberry leaves, spinning silk and building cocoons. Cocoons are spun to protect and prepare silkworm with appropriate temperature for transformation. ‘作茧自缚’ (a Chinese four-character idiom literally means that silkworm spins a cocoon around and gets imprisoned itself, which implies getting self troubled and trapped) is an enlightenment and reflection derived from human’s observation of silkworm and the natural world. This idom features a warning. Liang wraps the needles with plenty of silk which makes the work look like a soft and tempting bed, but it is actually a trap. The needles here also imply the torture instrument in ancient China.

Liang sees the living creatures in the modern society in a philosophical way. The laws of nature reflect that everything is equal. In this way, Liang examines the antinomy and allegory of life. Silkworms spin cocoons to trap themselves, which alarms that this might happen to human beings in the same way. However, human have not realised that they have been put in this circumstance. And the problem is that they could not stay out of it by themselves. The west has been putting the idea of ‘transcendence’ into practice in terms of religion. But after the Enlightenment, the modernism gradually tended into nihilism. On the other hand, Chinese culture tends to more focus on ‘nature’. In other words, it concentrates on bringing back the humanity to the naturalism that is inherent and profound. This idea is regarded as ‘immanence’, which waits for being awakened.

In Liang’s point of view, humanity is derived from nature. Giving humanity back to nature, to some extent, means bringing human to the initial point. That is to say everything originates from nature rather than human beings. This is ‘origin’, the true origin. Rewriting and redefining the modernism is somehow to return humanity to the original condition and to accept natural elements. Human beings are supposed to harmonise with nature and to absorb energy from nature.

The language of silkworm implies the code for life saving in a natural way, like Adorno. But this code differs from the one for artists, or might be encoded by the new technology image. The idea that ‘nature likes to hide’ needs the ‘silk meditation’ to present nature in a gentle way rather than in a violent way. This language might be seen as a ‘gift’ from the east.

It might help us to re-comprehend the Nowhere to Hide: an interview brochure recording the Snowden story is covered with silk and placed inside a hole on the wall. It seems like a spy secretly standing in the darkness. This work encourages audience to think about ‘visibility’ and ‘concealment’, the transformation between ‘peeping’ and ‘being peeped’, the relationship between ‘secret’ and ‘uncovering the secret’. Wearing the Iset’s veil, nature loves to hide. Art is simply like a weaved mask, but more mysterious. Eventually, it would be unveiled by the time.  

The Left Destiny

Desires and anxieties drive people to fight and plunder. The disorders and wars contributed by vying for natural resources could only be stopped by nature. But how can nature save human beings? Liang rethinks the relations between the wars and the petrol crisis in Iraq, sea pollution caused by petrol leak, the train crash in China, the disconnection of air flights and other tragic incidents. Liang has been trying to find a way to connect and ponder around sociology, archaeology and biological anthropology.

Liang reveals the relationships among humanity, nature, power and science through the buried silk and chains. His installation Destiny illustrates the scene that enormous and heavy chains pound and drill inside the earth while loads of tiny silkworms winding up and spinning silk. The permeated dark petrol and silvering silk present a strong and impressive contrast.

Liang wraps those discarded stones, iron bars and chains, petrol pipes and drums with silk, which seems like that they are sculptured by the hands of nature. In the huge exhibition space, the installation depicts a sinking old tanker sailing on the sea. Or it actually indicates the reef with floating oil contamination, which looks striking and threatening. Entering the space, visitors might feel like being placed in the boundless and hopeless sea. The attention to life and death involved awakens our humanity and courage.

What is the implied sign of the tough and old objects that are spun by soft silk? How does the softness fight against the violence? What presented here by the artist are the relics and ruins. Modernism contributes to the increasing remains and waste, and the intact only exists in the virtual space. The physicals situate at the destruction. The fierce fire of massacre is all around. Petrol could be the fuel as well as the incident that touches off a war. It is the power that drives the self-destruction of modernism. And after that, the modernism becomes in ruins.

Therefore, is the wrapping a kind of symbol of pursuit and protection? Or is it a powerless witness? The silk has been covering for years and is unlikely to be parted from the ruins. When the artist chooses to work with silk, the implied and involved fragility and controversy are thus revealed, while it shows certain gentle comfort. It could be seen as the witness of the two sides of fragility: one is the eventual status after being destroyed by hardness; the other is the softness of wrapping materials.  

Liang’s work might reflect and intrigue the inherent contrast: first, it is an introspection of power and violence; second, it might involve a confrontation between tradition and modernism, which is destined and elusive. Chains: The Unbearable Lightness of Being/Nature Series No. 79, which presents the dusted chains wrapped by the soft silk and was created a few years ago, has already implied the contrast. And the latest Nature Series No.200/Chain, created in 2014, is made of industrial metal chains twined around silk. From a distance, it looks like a rockery, or a potted tree, which illustrates the confrontation between modern industrialism and traditions. Destiny is more like the ruins after the war, which shows a sense of breakdown. The silk on the work is stretching between the ground and chains, like sails. Accordingly, the sails might be torn apart, it has bound up the chains. They rely on each other while fighting against each other. A mysterious and tragic atmosphere is created through the debris.

Furthermore, this sense of debris has expanded. It may be a single package for dismemberment, or the ruins of a seemingly modern city that have been packed together. After veiled with a piece of silk, a new concept has been brought out. It does not symbolise the preservation and conservation from museums, nor an implied story of history, nor the Egyptian mummies. What has the silk brought us? Is it a piece of garment used to cover a dead body? Is it a piece of garment used to cover a dead body from an ancient coffin which generates a sense of sagacity? Or it might lie dormant but is eager to wake up and to present itself. All the debris gives out the odour of bitterness, which is left for us to think about.

Heidegger, in Holzwege, analysed the objectivity of objects in terms of natural objects, implements, artworks, the objects created by gods and poetic gifts. When Duchamp found out the readymade, the boundary of objects was broken, but natural objects, still, seemed to be neglected by modernism. Duchamp managed to find out the relationship between infra-mince and natural objects, but the obstacle was to unveil the code of nature. Natural objects are actually a kind of readymade, even though they are not artificially designed and manufactured like urinal. Modernism might be re-written once natural objects could present a sense of ‘infra-mince’ dreamed of by Duchamp. And a new concept follows: ‘make nature become gift and surpass artwork.’ Duchamp’s work is beyond the concept of art. And speaking of Liang, he rebuilds and reforms the objects by silk. No matter it refers to artificial objects or artworks, both of them are going to create a brand-new world after being twined with silk.

The Poetry Studies of Snow Cover

Modernism can be seen as a turnout of the remains. The turnout here refers to the objects that have lost the inherent objectivity without any definition. In that case, how to help them to get back their dignity? Liang chooses to cover them with ‘snow’.
The alterations and side effects brought by the revolution of modernism, or modernism itself is meant to thoroughly recognise the ubiquity of disasters. Objects, between destruction and deconstruction, are very likely to lose the inherent standards. At first, objects would be abandoned as something used or deserted. The more desires, the more nihilistics; the more nihilistics, the more desires. The essential crisis of modernism in the west is exactly due to the increasing desires and nihilistics. And China, on the other hand, could not stay out of this vicious circle either. Then how to solve this problem? Desires, which feature nature without strengthened willpower, boast momentary nihilistics but are still able to generate positive nihilism. The dilemma of modernism could not be removed, unless nature decides and dominates: a new illusory society would be created once desires and nihilistics could grow freely and get combined together.

Liang wrapped the buildings, old telephones, integrated circuit, coffee boxes, high heels, ancient wall bricks, medicine boxes, and even utility poles. The whole looks like an abandoned city from a distance. But taking a look closely, it presents both usable and unusable daily utilities, which awakes a direction recognition and awareness of fated objects. Broken porcelain and crocks are covered with snow-like silk. This snow scene drives us to think about the desolateness, greatness, purity and empty of life and history. Liang creates a forsaken world covered with snow to formulate a new inspiration catalogues.

An artistic conception that is meant to be conceived is a world fulfilled with snow. The designed white world is an imitation of protected natural silk veil. This is why the utilities are covered with silk. Chinese contemporary art needs to represent the traditional Chinese naturalised conception: like a sense of emptiness, desolation, coldness and dullness. Certainly, it needs to completely return to the internality of nature through modernised and catastrophic transformation. The idea of snow could correct the producing of illusory modernised technology ahead of human’s ‘cool memories’.  But why it has to be snow? It is coldness that may comfort the righteous indignation for revolution. And the excessive modernised consumption requires to be slowed down. Therefore, Snow Cover is intended to bring us back to the supreme conception of traditional Chinese ink painting showing a feeling of void and coldness.

Modernism lacks certain insight into time: one refers to the time of ancient world; the other means a life conception. The basic living condition of modernism is rather vague and short. But the idea of snow inspires the naturalism before human’s existence and a feeling of ancient time, which is a period of memory that cannot be recalled but implied on the ground. Comparatively, Cloud, exhibited at ShanghART in 2007, symbolises the surpassing life that is a remote sense from the heavens. The sky and ground gather together to rescue the modern humanity.

Only the ‘snow spirit’ and chora-topia could purify the souls of people in modern time. Snow, facing modernism and the destruction caused by technology, is certain kind of protection and enlightenment for us to meditate the inherent cover of nature. The idea of snow is to lower the temperature, to get recovered and to breed, while silk indicates certain warmth - an expectation of spring.

Contemporary art has been looking for a way for cure and treatment. Liang has showed the possibility that life could be reborn and space could be restarted with the comfort brought by silk. ‘丝元’ (origin of silk) has been constantly used as a metaphor for the void sky. In the exhibition in 2014, the work turned into ‘frozen’ and ‘recuperated’ snow. Accommodating the desolate sky and dessert, silk features a message that implies the self-protection of nature’s veil.

The Zen Philosophy of Stele

The history of China is long and incessant, which is actually waiting to be reborn on the basis of traditional technology. The remaining old sayings, the breeding laws of nature, and the dignity and implicitness of nature are needed.

Stele is based on the idea that the cultural image videoed and zoomed by the silk thread, the wriggling silkworms, and the natural status of silk become the inscription on the stele.  

The name of this work, ‘stele’, implies the idea that the inscription is written for the deceased, while spinning silk is a process of self-consuming for silkworms. Both indicate a process of self-mourning. The images involved in Stele are simply ‘remaining images’, presenting a video-recorded creation process featuring the symptoms of melancholia. Liang’s silk accommodates the vicissitudes of life and is rich in poetic flavour. It is likely that the feeling of sorrow and depression implied in the Li Shangyin’s poem ‘春蚕到死丝方尽’ (literally means that silkworms spin the silk until their death which implies the genuine and abiding love) can be easily sensed.

The untouchable shadows of silk and the inscription on the stele appear what it really is not. The lapse of time is presented by the pervading of silk, the wriggling of silkworms and their life process. These images also produce the poetic lines with grief. Some feel like the withered petals, and some resemble marks left on an ancient stele. These may also look like naturally written characters. The seemingly pictographic characters activate the traditional Chinese concept - ‘resemblance and unlikeness’.

When silkworms finish spinning, the silk becomes thick and is unable to transmit light, which seems like a stele without any characters.

The spirit of nature needs to present its reflective image within the technology and to return to nature at the technology age. But how to make nature become an image by a means of image-forming? This might be an inspiration from Zen.

‘禅机’ (an allegorical word of Zen philosophy) is an ingenious transformation beyond expectation. Silkworm generates new definition of Zen which is innovative and out of conventions. Liang appreciates the world with an insight into modern image. The virtual reality by images intensifies the traditional false and true. The natural shape of silkworms gets activated between virtual and reality, illustrating the fact that it is the natural shape and form that stimulates new imagination.

What silkworm creates is the ‘disposition’ which is continuous and lively, instead of simply being a ‘form’.  The variety of natural shapes, keeping the vitality on, largely exceeds the rational construction of human beings. This is the difference between eastern imagination and western rational structure. The spiritual vision of east remains growing rather than being structured and limited. However, it calls for returning human bodies to the original natural perception through natural ways instead of human’s perception and reason.

Like what Goethe found: once we give up explaining the regularity of causes and consequences and back to natural mimicry, all the images, patterns and symbols, especially the speciality of pictographic characters, could be found out and presented. They are able to be connected and transformed, unfolding the endless plasticity of nature.

Patching up the Sky

The young Taiwanese singer and artist Zhang Xinrou wrote a song of the same name for Liang’s Patch up the Sky:

The sky is broken
As well as my heart
The delicate fine silk
That carries ancient music
Could help to mend
Could help to mend

Modernism brings an age of atheism. Gods have vanished. In Chinese culture, it features that the heaven is collapsing and human’s mentality is disappearing, which implies the signal for help like the Chinese mythology story - ‘女娲’  (a goddess with snake tail) patching up the azure sky with five-coloured stones.

However, modernism has been to a chasm, exceeding the boarders. In this case, how can it reach a brand-new world? Like a poet, Liang steps into the chasm which is a micro-world of silkworms. There, he tries to re-gain the ‘gift’. But before that, he has to learn how to give up while confronting the broken fragments. Liang keeps raising silkworms to create an artistic language, since he is aware that a language to describe the art world of silk is eagerly needed.

In Patch up the Sky, Liang shot the spun silk that he placed on the broken glasses and projected the moving images to the ceiling and walls. It looks like a pillar to the sky, patching up the heaven. From the fragments to the projected pillar, a new world seems to be created. Liang’s creation has been developed regarding the similar pronunciation of ‘silkworm’ and ‘incompleteness’ in Chinese. This is an inspiration from Chinese language. Liang concentrates on the language itself, listening to the language and finding out the ‘incompleteness’ of language. The idea is just like Heidegger’s ‘Kein Ding ist, wo das Wortgebricht’, or a stanza from Zen Buddhism, ‘Originally there is not asingle thing. Where could any dust be attracted?’

There used to be no patches of shadows. But Liang projected those to clear the entrance to heaven and broaden our vision. Like what he said, silk is the disciple of light, crossing all the manifestations of nature to call for redemption and triggering slight waves.

The shadow created by the glass fragments is the witness of ‘broken’. They fight to rise and are stimulated by strength. The shadow reflected in the mirror brings certain comfort in a poetic way.

In Cloud, Liang uses mirror covered with silk to reflect clouds in the sky, which is already closer to heaven. Then Patch up the Sky is more like self-examination of people who live in modern cities: although we have seemingly fascinating city life, our hearts are broken. The broken glasses symbolise the broken hearts and the silk here plays as a code that becomes certain strength to upraise and an anxiety to save the world.

The Gamut of Heart

Zhuangzi divides sound into three different categories: (1) the sound of human refers to the sound that human create with musical instruments; (2) the sound of ground means the sound from natural caves or the earth; (3) the sound of heaven is randomly created from nature without any artificial involvement. It is sound of ‘no sound’ and a thing of ‘nothing’. But it deliberately comes to this world. In other words, the sound of heaven is a combination of the natural randomness and emptiness, or the emptiness that arouses what does not exist among nature.

The sound of heaven is created by ‘nothingness’. More specifically, it refers to the sound that nature randomly creates without any human activity. For instance, Tao Yuanming’s ‘no-string Guqin’ might be simply a piece of wood without any strings, but resembles Guqin. When it is hung or stands beside a common Guqin, even though it could not play any music, it could still illustrate the sound of heaven and souls.

We are able to experience the sound of heaven by Liang’s Sound of Heart. Bars of bamboo hanging in the space look like pan flutes which might start to play music at any moment. The different levels indicate the musical scales and syllables. The colours of bamboo (might be green, yellow and black) imply different tones. The exhibition space plays music without any music. These bamboos, disturbing our visions and mind, tend to symbolise the individual destinies which are broken into pieces by modernism. Modernism is a disaster which breaks the connection between human and gods. And certain medium between gods and destiny is lacked. These bamboos are the witness of the fragility of life and a present of inherent bitterness.

It seems to symbolise human’s endless suffers and difficulties. But somehow, these are being lifted by a certain visible strength. During the rising process, the inherent inferiority and fragility among them have been removed. Seemingly, there is something inside calling for the energy. Then what is that?

These bamboo strips feature different shapes. Some of them are cut and half-exposed, while some resemble pipe instrument. Touched by silk, these strips, hanging in the space, are expected to play music. However, nothing happens. This implied expectation and the generated rhyme keep rising and appearing, like arpeggio. Each strip waits for a pair of hands to play and to reach heaven, becoming a towering melody.

Especially when some leaves are found on the bamboo stripes, it is very likely that these bamboos are still alive and burgeoning. It could be regarded as an inside vigour of germination in a way. And it is exactly what Sound of Heart indicates and manages to echo in the heart. Confronted with boundless sky, hanging bamboo stripes and the green branches and leaves, the deep-down heart, as well as the spiritual space, seem to be opened by the space among stripes.

Regarding the bamboos in traditional Chinese ink paintings, the joint part between two stripes is always vacant which adds certain rhyme in the paintings. While displaying Listening to the silkworm at Poetic Realism: A Reinterpretation of Jiangnan in 2006, Liang brought a silkworm nursery into the gallery. Audience were invited to listen to the sound that silkworms made when they fed, spun and transformed into butterflies. Then when it comes to Sound of Heart, the particular melody created by the bamboos keeps people stay or even makes them become eager to get involved as one of the strips.

The Chora-topia of Cloud Shadows

As a friend of the well-known concerto composer Chen Gang who produced The Butterfly Lovers, Liang has his own way to present the butterflies. The life process of silkworms has inspired Liang: at the larval stage, silkworms are mainly to present its breeding ability, which features the start of metaphysics; during the process of growing to adult silkworms, they begin to expand their territory and even breed on other objects whose texture seems to be completely different, like metal; at last they turn into butterflies and illustrating the elements of the universe.

This also implies the principle of triplicity regarding natural incubation which stands at the existing hatch, rather than the existing value of the artificial: one of the aspects of this principle implies the surrounding natural world which is a world of silkworms that is awakened by the artist. It is capable of presenting the re-process and circulation of nature; the second features the strength of elements. What silkworm evokes is the elemental vitality and lively rhythm; and the third refers to the infinity to heaven.  

How can silkworms reach the universe? How to merge the beauty of cocoons and silk under the dim light together with the cloud in the sky? How to present the cloud that features various emotions of lottery buyers after they find out the results? How to deepen a realm? This work was created at the Tiantai Mountain which is a sacred place of Buddhism. Liang placed silkworms on the mirror and let them spin freely. The silk produced are mingled with the reflected could in the mirror. It is like the Spiegel-Spiel raised by Heidegger.

Then how to convert the cloud mirror and the sound of heart to present the boundlessness of heaven? Based on his own ‘cloud theory’ and ‘cloud melody’, Liang merges nature with creation, poetic feelings and sociology, earth and sky, limit and infinity.

Planar Tunnel was created after Liang did a further research of ‘cloud’. This work presents a circular flat piece of silk which presents elegance and jade-like texture. Poetically, the silk seems to be weaved by the moonlight, casting the world. The circle-square crossover indicates the archaic belief that the earth’s shape is plane and the sky is circular. The idea of Planar Tunnel is derived from ‘素丝禅衣’ - a silk garment that was unearthed from King Ma’s Mound (an archaeological site in China). Liang developed the idea to go through the history and the present, and to respond to western minimalism. By rebuilding the relationship between the plane abstract paintings and the ready-made products, Liang brings natural objects to plane creation while unveiling a dimensionless world. This is the infra-mince that western abstract paintings lack.  

A Move in Silence was born to keep Liang’s imagination for ‘cloud’: the floating clouds round up like a spherical wall with a huge stone hanging in the middle. One is light and still, the other is heavy and moving. All together create a space that echoes the original sound of the universe. And here comes the sound of heaven as well.
In order to get deeper into the unlimited space of nature, Liang has devoted himself into researching the world of silkworms for decades. The silkworm eggs create a dimensionless space like the sky while a bar of stone hanging there, which seems to suggest the existence of another world. While wandering around the silk wall, we might find an illusion that the various silk patterns keep moving and diffused in accordance with the light. We might feel like being indulged in the magic clouds and are going to welcome an imaginary world.

The poetic character of clouds has been defined since then: righteous, flickering, twining and sea-like. But all these characters are derived from the origin of nature. This is a spiritual world of cloud shadows.

Cloud might be the code for culture rescue in Chinese culture. The scroll unearthed from King Ma’s Mound, figure paintings and landscape paintings are fulfilled with numerous cloud-like patterns, which is certainly a representative of  ‘元’ (origin). Liang starts his creation with living silkworms to evoke the vitality of  ‘元’ (origin). Extending and reaching the clouds above, the spun silk becomes the embodiment of clouds building up a contemporary chora-topia without dimensions.

Related Artists:
Related Exhibitions:
LIANG Shaoji: Back to Origin
LIANG Shaoji: Back to Origin
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