Uninkable 墨不到

上海ART-BA-BA流动空间 ART-BA-BA Mobile Space Shanghai 2012.07.21-08.19

登载于《艺术界》2012年10月刊 From: Oct Issue 2012 of LEAP

Translated by Dominik Salter Dvorak

地上有一张洁白的纸

文/顾灵

前言墙上“墨不到”三个字还在,地上却只见大大小小的块状痕迹,表明这里曾经放着纸,痕迹旁的说明卡片还在,印着艺术家的名字与作品的标题。观者必须低头甚而弯腰才能看清,笔者必须将每幅作品的照片还原到这一方方少灰的痕迹里。作品的多少取决于展厅的大小,艺术家的创作必须遵守策展人所规定的尺幅限制与材料限定,材料即为宣纸与水墨。

纸墨可以被视作单纯的材料。如安娜塔西亚(Anastasia Ax)在上午艺术空间中铺满白纸后以墨作为行为的媒介,利用其对纸的入侵,借与其挥洒的能量感染现场;如波拉彼薇(Paola Pivi)在巨型泵阀装置中灌注的墨水,飞流直下的液柱溅染了周遭的空间,气味漫入观者的呼吸。我们对纸墨的情感来自长久的耳闻目染,对纸墨美感的识别辨析同材料本身一样自然。于古人和少数今人,纸墨是稀松平常的必备,是沟通笔会的媒介,是交流意趣的表现。过去是过去的当代,当代本一贯存在。要将过去的当代同现在的当代划界限,界限往往模棱两可。受邀参展的多为当代装置艺术家,均有各自明确的创作脉络,都未选择水墨作为其惯常的创作媒介。他们的作品在同一场展览中呈现,以同样的媒材创作互不相同却颇有联系的话题与视觉表达:平面的框与局限,花鸟鱼虫,燃烧、冰冻、揉捩材料,录像、装置、雕塑及行为的画面感与绘画的转化和转换,社会现象与牵扯出的议题,传统与当下的热闹。艺术家从自身的创作体系中走神一会儿,聚到一块儿把画儿扑在地上。当谈论初衷的对象退回为单纯的创作媒材,绘画成为命题下唯一的创作形式,策展人张洁白的《墨不到》反而成为全场最开放的作品,这张曾在一瓶墨汁旁躺了半小时的白纸,成为这场策展观念为主导的展览之标题。

撇去纸墨所谓中国元素的标签,被口号式宣称的“传统断裂”与“尴尬反抗”更易化解,先人以纸墨创作的美感与艺术形式在日久经年中仍有望成为当下的支撑。

此次展览的上半场是张洁白的最近个展《肉,墨……你们在那边还好吗?》,这场装置展览在充分彰显艺术家的建筑师身份外,其对绘画的灼热仍无处可藏。肉色与墨色是艺术家向自己似具非抽的绘画创作提问,并尝试回答。而此次邀请三十二名艺术家集体答题的命题作画亦有助于张洁白探讨视觉创作。旁观有言,《墨不到》是张洁白的一件创作,并不为过。这样看来,他在展览前言中扬言打击的气势汹汹,矛头指向的并非纸墨,或糟蹋水墨的“另一群当代艺术家”,而是当代艺术创作难以面对的继承审美的渊源联系,以及各类创作形式与纸墨绘画的根本转换。

The three characters for Uninkable remain on the opening wall, but below them on the gallery floor residual streaks of paper reveal that something else had nce been stuck there. Beside these is a placard printed with the artist’s name and the title of the piece. The viewer must stoop down to read it properly, and when photographing each artwork in this exhibition, I had to return to this dusty, scarred expanse of floor. The various dimensions of each work accord to those of the space, and the artists participating were required to comply with both the material and dimensional stipulations set out by the curator, the materials in question being xuan rice paper and ink.

Ink and paper could be called pure materials. Anastasia Ax adopted in as a medium for performance at AM Ar Space, using it to “attack” an expanse of white paper its fluid form infecting its surroundings. Paola Pivi’s recent large-scale installations employed large pumps to create towering columns of flowing ink, its strong odor suffusing the atmosphere. Our appreciation of ink and paper has developed by osmosis; our discernment of its aesthetic qualities lies in the intrinsic qualities of the materials themselves. To people of former times, and to far fewer in the contemporary world, ink and paper was and remains a basic necessity of life, a medium connecting writers and calligraphers, and expressive tool for the communication of interests and curiosities. The past is the past of the present, but the present will always be. An attempt to draw boundaries between the past of the present and the actual present will always lead to contradiction and prevarication.

The numerous mixed-media artists who were invited to participate in this exhibition each have woven their own well-wrought creative fabrics, non of which typically involves these two materials. Their works, which appear together here united by medium deal with different yet distinctly interrelated and restrictions of the flat-plane, the materials are subjected to various treatments: drawn onto, burnt, frozen, twisted, torn and so on. The pictorial senses of video, installation, sculpture, and performance are transformed and converted into drawing, inducing social phenomena and implication, and a clamorous meeting of the traditional and the contemporary. The artists wander out of their respective creative systems, then reassemble together to fluter their contributions onto the gallery floor. Returning to the simplicity, or purity, of these materials, drawing becomes the sole form available according to the curatorial guidelines. In this sense, curator Zan Jbai’s piece, also titled Uninkable, becomes the bearer of this show’s curatorial focus. And in regard to ink and paper’s role as a supposedly essential element of China, the slogans which dog it:”rupture from tradition” and “defiant resistance” are easily dispelled here. The aesthetics and forms cultivated by people in years past still endeavor to play a role in the present.

Zan Jbai’s recent solo “Flesh, Ink…How Is Everything Going There” featured an installation amply reflecting the artist’s obvious passion for drawing, and could in fact be taken as the first half of this exhibition; flesh and ink are the two issues being dealt with in his paintings, and the proposition of the collective response of 32 artists via drawing is certainly a contribution to Zan’s ceaseless probing of visual expression. Indeed, one spectator’s comment that “Uninkable” the exhibition is simply another of his works is not at all unreasonable. If seen this way, the target of the foreword’s aggression is not the medium, nor is it that “other kind of contemporary artist” who defiles these pure materials. It is both the relationship to these aesthetic forms which contemporary art has inherited yet seems unable to confront, and the simple transformation of ink painting into various different creative forms.

 

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One Response to Uninkable 墨不到

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