十年

文/陳韻凝

十年前認識藝術家陳承衛,當時他剛剛從中國美院畢業,邊勤懇的帶著學生,邊默默的畫著架上繪畫。當時他是以專業成績第一的名次考入並畢業於中國美院,自然天賦異稟。我問他你最喜歡的藝術家是誰?他說,林布蘭。十年後,當抽象作品在藝術品市場瘋狂的今天,他仍然在堅持著架上繪畫。術業有專攻,一攻就是孜孜不倦的十年。此時我再問他,你現在最愛的藝術家是誰?他說,林布蘭。
曾經我們聊過關於前世,他曾在國外遊歷時遇到過一位老者,列了他的一世又一世。曾經的很多個不同的自己出生在環境迥異的東西方國度,完全不同的人生軌跡。而遇到老者好幾年之前陳承衛其實就已經開始進入一個獨特的單元,那就是—–為自己造像。這是將“物質感”與“戲劇感”融合的系列探索。人是否有前世,沒有肯定的答案。若真有前世,他從2004年就開始創作的“自畫像系列”筆下每一個不同的自己也許真的在前世裡真真切切的存在過。

陳承衛說在他20出頭的時候,天生的自然卷略黃的頭髮,與林布蘭有某種神似,他們常常可以在創作時在內心裡對話,就像與另一個自己對話一樣自然隨意。於是他在2015年創作了這件《自傳體-致敬林布蘭》。

林布蘭的眾多自畫像中,他對自己蒼老的面龐毫無掩飾,完美的形象對他毫無意義,對於人性的闡述非常直接。陳承衛也是如此,在他諸多的自畫像中,那些青澀,高傲,孤獨,猶豫,疲憊,全都呈現出來,正如他此次的個展那樣,他希望讓我們看到他豐富且活躍的藝術探索。我曾經拜訪過藝術家工作室,看過他創作的過程,每一張畫都要一遍又一遍的畫好久。每一個局部都要一遍又一遍的反復疊加處理。人物的輪廓和細節會被他獨特的藝術處理所賦予新的生命,諸如他會將表情紋,眼神等一切帶情感脈絡的東西一一處理到最妥帖的程度。讓整個作品畫面呈現獨特的唯美,在細細品鑒的時候,又發現其中其實填埋了很多很多複雜的敘事與情緒。這是藝術家很特別,很不一樣的地方。

那些林布蘭筆下莊重華麗的服裝,被光線撕碎的面龐,孤獨的眼神,還有強烈的明暗處理,都深深的影響了承衛一路的創作。他敬仰林布蘭,但並不想模仿林布蘭,他將這種愛融入骨血裡,從當下出發,進行新的創作。在他2012年開始創作的大民國系列裡,他成了自己最出色的模特,他開始將自己自畫像的形式與民國元素融合,用一種我們完全覺得驚訝的形式表達出來,畫面裡好人中也有壞人,壞人中也潛伏著好人,像一團迷霧。他並不想表達畫中人物的實際身份,而是讓觀眾自己去猜想推斷。大民國開篇第一幅,畫於2012年。穿著特務服裝的人物手電筒照出來的是黨徽,還有右上角神秘的投影是手。那些看似是不善的人物卻是潛伏著正義的,就是這樣獨特的充滿著想像力和戲劇色彩。我們能看到的每一幅關於他的作品都是讓人可以浮想聯翩耐人尋味的,藝術家最怕的是沒有創造力和想像力,而他都具備了,這也是陳承衛極其不一樣的地方。

承衛這幾年開始關注古代佛造像。對於面龐莊重,形態唯美的菩薩都一一收入。從古代佛像中汲取了造像感與人物力度,他的心境也在逐漸的走向更高的層面,記得藝術家最深刻的一句話就是“畫 就是自己的妻子,此生只為畫畫而活。”這十年便真是如此言出必行的,如此專注於一件事的藝術家必定是好藝術家,期待承衛的下一個再下一個十年。

A Decade

Chen Yunning

I got to know the artist Chen Chengwei a decade ago when he had just graduated from the China Academy of Art. At that time, he was busy with teaching some students earnestly while working on an easel painting quietly. With the highest score in the professional course among all students enrolled by China Academy of Art that year, he is no doubt a gifted talent. I once asked him about his favorite artist, Rembrandt was his answer. After a decade when abstract works are making a hit in art market today, he still persists in working on the easel painting. One should try to be a master in the field he specializes in. To reach this goal, he has worked diligently and tirelessly for a decade. I ask him again about his favorite artist, Rembrandt, the answer is the same.
We had talked about pre-life. He told me that he met an old man who listed several forms of his pre-lives during the journey in foreign countries. Born in different eastern and western countries of various environments, the pre-lives of him had followed diversified courses of life. In fact, he had entered a unique unit, namely creating the portrait for himself, as early as several years before he met the old man. This is a series of exploration of the integration of “dramatic effect” “real substance”. It is not sure whether there is a pre-life for human beings. If there is pre-life, different self-portraits in his “self-portrait series” created since 2004 perhaps actually existed in his pre-lives.

Chen told me that he born a resemblance to Rembrandt with the natural curly slight blondhair at his twenties. There could even be an inner conversation between the two during the creation which was as natural as talking to another self. Therefore, he created the work Self-portrait-A Tribute to Rembrandt in 2015.
Among his self-portraits, Rembrandt had never tried to varnish his aged face, a direct illustration of human nature; because he thought that a perfect image doesn’t mean anything. So does Chen Chengwei. His self-portraits present his naivety, proud, loneliness, hesitation, exhaustion, and so on. Just like this solo exhibition, he hopes to show us his rich and vibrant life in artistic exploration. I have visited his studio to observe his creation. He should spend a long time on the repeated painting of each work. Every detail is processed for many times. The outline and details of the character are endowed with new life by his unique artistic skills. For example, everything that can show the emotion of the character like expression lines, eyes, and so on, is properly painted. If you appreciate it carefully, you will find that his work not only displays a unique aesthetic value but also embodies much complex narrations and emotion. This is something unique as an artist.

The gorgeous costumes, the faces fragmented by light, the loneliness in the eyes, and the strong contrast in the works of Rembrandt have deeply influenced the creation career of Chengwei. He shows great respect for Rembrandt, yet he doesn’t want to imitate him. With the passion for Rembrandt flowing in his blood, he makes new creations on the basis of the reality. He began to create the Great Republic Period series in 2012. With himself as the best model in the works, he integrated his self-portraits with the elements of the Republic Period and presented it to the audiences with a completely astonishing form. There are kind people as well as evil people in the picture, yet it is hard to tell who is kind and who is evil in the mysterious atmosphere. Without revealing the actual identity of the characters in the painting, he wishes that the audiences can make their own judgment. The first picture of the Great Republic Series was completed in 2012. The one dressing like a spy is using a flashlight to shed light on a Party emblem and there is the shadow of a mysterious hand on the upper right corner. Those with vicious look are showing a sense of justice. The works with unique features are rich in dramatic color to provide immense space for people’s imagination. Every work of his is thought-provoking and grips the imagination of us. The greatest disaster of artists is to be out of creativity and imagination, yet he is rich in both, which makes him stand out of his peers.

In recent years, he began to pay attention to ancient Buddhist statues. He collects Buddhist statues and engraves their solemn faces and graceful gesture of these statues on his mind. Through absorbing the skills for making ancient Buddhist statues and their features, his mentality is gradually promoted onto a higher level.

I was deeply impressed by one sentence of him, “Painting is like my wife. I live for painting”. He kept his words in the past decade. An artist with such great persistence should be a good one. I am really looking forward to the next decades of Chengwei’s art life.