Hidden Immensity: Artist Statement
Text/Artist Tung Shin Ru
Yao Miao (窈渺): Refined and delicate, hidden and remote.
Yao (窈): A graceful and elegant woman; deep and profound landscape.
Miao (渺): Tiny or infinitesimal.
Due to my reverence and praise for the universe and nature, I have continued creating works based on the delicate and refined symbiosis of nature and humanity, exploring the infinite universe, the mystery of nature, and my inner, spiritual realm through the abstract language and techniques of mixed media. The thorough training of ink painting in college years has kept me persistently pursuing my ideal landscape and constructing a hidden and immense organic, lively space with the aesthetic experience of poetry.
Recently, when I am painting, I would spread out the canvas on the floor to create the foundation and texture before I splash and drip colors and collide them with by applying automatic drawing techniques. This approach allows me to create the image of a newborn universe, which, when observed from above, can be associated with continuous rocky mountains, a vast land, rivers meeting an ocean, volcanic lava and fire. Contemplating on the image, I would then renew the arrangement and add layers to moderately preserve and subtly add details in between the natural and the non-natural as well as the painted and unpainted, creating the earth, mountains, rivers, and living beings like the Creator. The image would emerge as a profound and delicate landscape of life.
Modern technologies have largely extended human vision in a macroscopic way. The change of creative perspective has also enabled me to conceive time and space in a different way. I have always been attracted to the open cosmic view of Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu, and therefore, have always upheld the idea of representing both the infinitesimal and immense in my work. As the feelings towards the landscape remains the same, our vision of the present moment can extend infinitely, defying gravity to travel to the outer space and looking back upon the world to reflect on ourselves and generate a new perspective.
The Hidden Immensity series created in 2017 addresses the topic of life, time and space, just like the Cryptozoic eon. 4.5 billion years ago when the Earth was just formed, the newly emerged, organic forms of life experienced constant deconstruction, reconstruction, explosion, condensation, destruction and regeneration, and eventually entered a stable state. Artistic creation is like returning to the primitive, chaotic, unknown state of the ancient life. Painting requires one to remerge with the most original, pure spirituality and to assume the height of the Creator in order to make art. The process is reminiscent of the Cryptozoic eon as things are repetitively destroyed and reborn, evolving into a brand new spiritual universe that embodies a fresh time and space. One can observe this universe, travel in it, and contemplate on it as a remote, refined, hidden and immense mental image of landscape quietly materializes.