与We Exhibit srl联合主办和出品
Palazzo Pisani Santa Marina （皮萨尼 圣玛丽娜宫）
Calle delle Erbe, Cannaregio 6104, 30121 Venice
105201901132250 69x138cm 纸本水墨 2018
200201806251030 40x110cm 纸本水墨 2018
105201811192005 55x205cm 纸本水墨 2018
105201808312320 纸本水墨 90X200CM 2018
说到回旋结构与符号累积的价值，我想重新回到关于速度的思考。美国知名电影《速度与激情》（Fast and Furious）颂扬和表现了非常“现代的”速度神话，（主人公）过着危险生活并从不停下来思考，例如开着车毫发无损地从摩天大楼上速降到地面或飞跃至临近的大楼上……诸如此类，一旦遇到挑衅便立即采取行动。其实要做到这一点，要么必须非常具有攻击性，要么非常幸运且非常熟练地拥有着令人难以置信的神经反应速度……或者具备以上所有。当今世界所面临的环境问题促使我们追求一种放慢速度、节能减排的生活。速度有时看起来更像是一种与权力、浪费、傲慢相关的维度。相反，捍卫快速的观点也提醒我们，速度是自然界中最有效定义掠食者等级的标准。说到这里，为什么不能颂扬速度之美呢？虽然快速消耗石油燃料的形势很严峻，但是我们是否体验过在沿海岸线公路上瞬间加速的快感呢？快速行动回应了人类所面临的严峻问题“生命太短暂”，但不仅限于此，快速行动还需要智慧和技巧，大师们如此迅疾是因为他们知道如何追求自己想要的东西。
105201808191715 60x160cm 纸本水墨 2018
文/策展人 维托里奥·乌巴尼（Vittorio Urbani）
心迹 尺寸可变 纸本水墨 2017
Organised and produced in collaboration with We Exhibit srl
Opening: 8 May 2019, 2 pm
9 May 2019 – 30 June 2019
Opening times: 10 am to 6 pm, closed on Tuesdays
Admission to the opening and the exhibition is free
Palazzo Pisani Santa Marina
Calle delle Erbe, Cannaregio 6104, 30121 Venice
It is possible to approach the art of Sher Ding (Linhai, China, 1972) through two “doors”: the first and most accessible one is that of traditional Chinese pictorial art, including calligraphy which is often an integral part of painting. It is after all interesting that some elements of Chinese writing are called pictograms as they are recognised visually just as logos or symbols instead of being “read” like letters of the Roman or Arabic alphabets. His signs could therefore be read as abstract pictograms, if you will allow the paradox.
The second, less obvious door leads to analogies between his work and current modes of transcription of all words or numbers through the binary code, electronic transcriptions of data and even the barcode that marks today every single existing items except (so far) human beings. In these forms of language every sign has a precise value. Sher Ding’s way has to do with this all, thus making the visual aspect of his work more contemporary and providing it with a secret logic and exactness that appears in the sequence and frequency – that is, in the rhythm – of signs in his paintings. In music, when sounds give way to other sounds in a sequential rhythm we get harmony, when this happens with words, we have poetry. In visual arts, the regular repetition of signs will result in a sense of completion and beauty.
However, it is not easy to reach sense and beauty through the abstract pictorial language. The apparent simplicity of signs, shapes, choice of colour can lead to a bewildering generality of the message, suitable for all uses and interpretations, even when opposed.
The reason why the artist has chosen the abstract language is – in his own words – that “Shanghai is crowded, huge and fast”, therefore he cannot register its changes through realistic images. Rather, he has to use the abstract way to register what he sees and feels.
201706182210 90x120cm 镜面亚克力 2017
Therefore, while Sher Ding navigates with great ease Chinese artistic tradition (which is remarkable in its ability to welcome new variations on its centuries-long themes), he charters unknown waters when he tackles the wild flood of abstract art, considering the precious background of his individual personality as an artist. I would like to point out the “danger” of this choice in order to appreciate the artist’s courage. And a brave artist is also a sincere artist.
Sher Ding is without a doubt a brave person … because creating art means choosing to renounce other, perhaps more lucrative, activities. As far as courage is concerned, I am tempted to remind you of his long career with the Military Air Force of the People’s Republic of China. The abstract way is constitutionally faster (also in the way the visitor looks at it) as compared to other forms of realistic art which deal with a narrative that needs to be “read” by the visitor, thus requiring time. Speed’s most essential trait is that very little time can be wasted on making dangerous and critical choices. I do not know whether “fast” is consciously part of his way of creating art, but it becomes obvious by observing his works.
Signs that overlap nervously with other signs, almost as if to cancel or correct them, always with a lightness that seems to us the daughter of speed, returning complicatedly on what has already been done. We can compare this to the repetition of a “phrase” in a musical composition that expands and changes rhythm, and that, by returning, makes up its framework. It is the same sound pattern, which is all we remember from a whole musical page, that sometimes embellishes some event in our lives and that we love even when we hear it isolated from the rest. It is the “petit phrase” that returned in Vinteuil’s music and obsessed Proust. By returning, even though constantly changing, Ding’s sign does not contradict itself as if it were being modified, substituted, corrected. On the other hand, it is endorsed and reinforced. And it explains itself more clearly, like the musical phrase that returns in the body of the symphony. In going and coming, it grows in complexity. But returning could appear to mean correcting what has already been done, as if admitting a mistake. In the case of Ding’s paintings, instead, returning means expanding, explaining. Lyric poetry is often considered an extremely concise form of poetry, but also operating with lightness by adding brush strokes, signs or notes is entirely lyrical.
Having said this on the value of returning and accumulating signs, I would like to newly approach the“problem” of speed. A famous American TV show – Fast and Furious – celebrated the very “modern” myth of speed, of living dangerously, of not stopping to think. Like throwing oneself from a skyscraper in a car to land on the nearby skyscraper with virtually no damage at all … things like that. Action immediately ensues from provocation. To act like that, one must either be very aggressive or possess incredible speed of neural transmission or be very lucky and also very capable … or all of the above together. In a world in which environmental concerns try to encourage us to lead a slower, less consumerist way of life, speed appears like a dimension linked with power, waste, arrogance and therefore to negative, overpowering male themes. It is not hard for me, instead, to defend the fast dimension by reminding you about how speed is one of Natural Selection’s most potent instruments in defining hierarchies among predators. Having said this, why not celebrate the beauty of speed? I know it is not positive to consume fossil hydrocarbons, but have you really never accelerated suddenly and with subtle pleasure while driving along a coastline road? Acting fast answers the grave human problem of “life being too short”, but not only this. Acting fast requires wisdom and technique: masters are fast because they know how to be.
For his solo exhibition in Venice at Palazzo Pisani di Santa Marina, Ding has produced installations and his typical works called ink-wash paintings, a combination of abstract constructs and individual emotions.
An interesting note by the artist poetically intuits: “I will think with my hand”. This means that technique and emotion will precede the rational path. And also: “I have tried to respect each moment of epiphany that I have experienced”.
An interesting trait of his work, discussed by the artist himself, is boundlessness, that is being without limits – or better, without borders. At this point, in order to understand and define Sher Ding’s work, we have discussed a series of categories – abstract art, speed, the repetition of a theme – that share a dangerous generality. How shall I put it: aren’t the traits of a well-defined artwork – scrupulously exact in its statement – realism, a meticulous, slow execution, renewed instead of repeated phrasing? So how will the permanent cancellation of borders (between you and me, or this or that State, or this or that object) make his work more specific and recognisable, especially as it is abstract? The reason lies in the fact that being without borders is an ethical dimension, not an aesthetic one: the artist often defines boundlessness as “coexistence, respect, balance and perfection”
The difficult question remains. Do we really need Sher Ding’s work? The answer can be found in his technical confidence and the honesty of his motivations. By significantly alternating different materials (metal, canvas, paper and several types of paint) Ding shows width of skills and mastery. As to the meaning, or as we have defined it, the honesty of his motivation, his free but precise style originates without a doubt from an inner lightness and joy that are thus offered to the visitor.
The artist writes: “I felt great satisfaction when my work was labelled as simple, because it is exactly like this that I want it to be”. However, it is a simplicity conditioned by its own rules.
Sher Ding’s work mixes biographical facts, his studies and work experiences, the ancient tradition that is behind him and the unmistakable contemporaneity of the artistic result. When can we say that an artistic work is contemporary? It is obviously not enough that it is “made now”. It is contemporary when it deals with, and interprets, the meaning of today’s way of life, also helping the visitor understand it. The unquestionable elegance of Sher Ding’s work, his speed (again, of the spirit and not necessarily of the execution), his humble but also proud identification in the great tradition he belongs to, but also his capacity to address with simple confidence an international audience knowing that he will be understood, these are the traits that precisely define the contemporaneity of his work.
Text by curator Vittorio Urbani
Istanbul, 16 April 2019
Palazzo Pisani Santa Marina （皮萨尼 圣玛丽娜宫）
业务合作: 010-84599636-852 firstname.lastname@example.org 责任编辑: 程立雪010-84599636-852
Copyright Reserved 2000-2019 雅昌艺术网 版权所有