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Sound in Concentration

Author: Bao Qian Translator: Serein Liu 2015-12-03

Daydream gathers the universe together around and in an object.
—Gaston Bachelard (French)

Soundless melody tells what it is and why it is at the moment that all beings are in deep concentration. This moment could change into diverse images which are certainly not the floating flashes, since it is indeed a hidden dream. Ancient Chinese had an insightful perspective of concentration. Zhang Yanyuan, in Tang Dynasty, depicted the artistic practice of Gu Kaizhi in Lidai Minghua Ji (Famous Paintings through History) as “sensing nature in full concentration to forget the outside world and self; leaving the physical form, and bidding farewell to the knowledge”. While focusing and meditating, it happens frequently that illusions keep showing up. Those, originating from “die existenz”, speak for the deep down heart, invisible and uncatchable. There is “sound” and “soundless melody” which could be listened and approached by heart. They seem to directly point to the origin but is hard to present in daily life.  Certain artworks help to find out the soundless pleasure and comfort in our deep down heart. While observing and feeling the broadened insight, a world that “the(state of)vacancy should be brought to the utmost degree, and that of stillness guarded with unwearying vigour” are thus been accessed and illustrated. Liang Shaoji’s artworks, like the world above, successfully maintain the closeness between humans and the beings.

By presenting the world of silkworms, Liang Shaoji has strengthened and illustrated the reality of life process and the abstraction of life essence in front of the audience. It is the initiate of his gentle and philosophical thinking. Silkworm exists as a life form. Liang’s art creating way which originates from nature has been shown as a particular structure with his sensation and interpretation, unveiling and depicting “die existenz” by metaphors. The new lives in Window, wrapping and winding together, give a hint that the overlapping lives situate between being imprisoned and being unrestricted. Silk Dress and Sewing Machine demonstrate the artist’s ideas about naturalised and humanised technology.  The seasonal scenery of silkworm’s life process is vividly illustrated in Can Chanchan (Silkworm Spinning), and the shuttles in front extend the implication with certain rhythms. Barcarolle brings the weaving process of textile cruising in the time of beings. While the weaving tool is shuttling back and forth, the interspace among threads lead the space sense of time to the illusions. In Nature Series No. 106, the flashing light reflected by the mirrors project to the ceiling and the surrounding walls. The work moves while people are wandering around. A sense of solicitude and warmth are delivered through silk and lotus leaves in Silk Shadow. “The (state of) vacancy should be brought to the utmost degree, and that of stillness guarded with unwearying vigour.” Laozi’s philosophy is vividly illustrated in Planar Tunnel, with a piece of delicate and fragile silk presenting the artist’s meditation of “origin”. The movements, sound, traces and light left or generated by silkworms could be touchable and sensible, while the life form and the time space of nature is silently placed aside. Although these medium have already been telling their own stories, the artist has been sketching between the reality and imagination, which opens a door for the conversation regarding dimensions. It is the destiny and determination that lead us to the origin of beings. Emotions are thus gradually become visible, while we are showing various ideas as a whole.  

Liang Shaoji’s Silk Dream enables his audience to be indulged into the space that he creates, and to figure out those that has been hidden and could not been seen on ourselves without viewing the space. This is Liang Shaoji’s strength. Technology referred to skill and art in Greek civilization before. During that time, skill was a means of discovering and presenting “cognition”. It did not simply mean the manufacturing activity, but was more about interpreting “why it was”. It is different from the technology today. What skill could largely demonstrate is to unveil “what it is”. While Liang was doing minus and removing something, it was the moment before the soundless melody arrived. In this way, the artistic language that Liang Shaoji has been using originates from his insightful perspective of “die existenz” which directly conveys the sense of poetry. All of us have been through this: what one sentence means could last longer than a relationship; imagination or illusions tell much more than the reality, which makes it hard to distinguish them. There is a certain “pause” or “moment” in Liang’s creation process, which symbolises extension. Even it is hardly presentable, it is in its own way.  

Violaine (blind): I hear…
Marat: What did you hear?
Violaine: Beings and I coexist.

News for Mary

Bao Qian
Nov. 2015

Related Artists:
Related Exhibitions:
Liang Shaoji: Silk Dream


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