阿卡迪亚是希腊一个与世隔绝的诗歌世界，是理想中牧歌般的世外桃源。多年前看到普桑的《阿卡迪亚的牧人》，被“Et in Arcadia ego”(阿卡迪亚也有我，“我”是指死亡)这句话深深打动，它体现了死亡的必然性和普遍性，不论在何处也难以逃避死亡。但死亡在充当毁灭者的同时，也是一个保存者，存在一种无限循环的承继，符合自然、符合德性，短暂的呈现每一个阶段，拥有了惟属自己的坚实价值。从此喜爱了普桑，他的沉默和理性，透明的、如水晶般闪亮的明晰，诗般的韵律等等都是我所追求和需要的。
这次展览的题目之所以叫“阿卡迪亚”，因为绘画就是我的阿卡迪亚，为我带来存活意义和欢心愉悦同时，人生的苦痛亦包含其中，就是无可避免的“Et in Arcadia ego”。对立面总是共生关系，在它飞旋离去的时刻，我将会(不得不或需要)将其相反的一面再拉回，而达到一种平衡，这种平衡体现在视觉和内心，由此我创造了忠于自己的画面。内心和视觉的无碍自由，可达深处，可攀顶峰，视域里的一切被解构、重建，色彩、结构作为诗歌里的语言、音乐中的音符来表现，而我成为把各部分整合起来的“诗人”和“作曲家”，互不相连之物被不间断的紧密联系在一起，赋予了新的生命，我创造并赢得了时间，画面寂静，所有的声音都会在其中回响,一切都有序清晰的呈现。我将模糊的物象归纳、强化，并用主观的色彩和造型来体现、营造氛围，如《阿卡迪亚》主要运用紫色和黑色、《in Tahiti》中的各种植物的外形、《昼与夜》粉色和蓝色的树等。作品中黑色的运用是对一种纯净简朴、夜晚一样沉思的追求，蕴含着生的凝重和对死的反思。不规则的块面在作品中多次出现，如《夜火1》灰烬外的蓝色、《山中小屋》山上的石块、《冬天1》裸露的土地等，这些总让我想起一望无际的草原上散落的白色的羊和沙漠中遍布的植物和石头，分布在颜色、形状、结构上基本都是均衡的，就像内心深处的洞，需要一个一个填满，来平衡和满足自我面对世患和困境的失衡。
By Lan Zhaoxing
Arcadia is an isolated poetic place in ancient Greece and an idealized pastoral paradise. I was deeply touched by the phrase “Et in Arcadia ego” (“Even in Arcadia, there am I”, “I” refers to Death) when I encountered Poussin’s work The Shepherds of Arcadia many years ago. It conveys the necessity and universality of mortality, the unavoidable mortality wherever you are. Decease works as a destroyer as well as a conserver, informing an unlimited cycle of succession. During this process, each phase contemporarily presents the attributes of its own solid value in accordance with nature and virtue. Since then, I have been fond of Poussin. His silence and rationality, his transparency, which is as clear as crystal, and his poetic rhythm are what I have been searching for.
Painting is my “Arcadia”, bringing me the meaning and pleasure of living as well as the pain of life, which is the inevitable “Et in Arcadia ego”. The opposites always coexist. When one pole spins away, I will have to or need to pull back the other pole to attain a balance. The balance is presented in visuality and innermost being, the unobstructed freedom of which can reach the depth as well as the peak of innermost being, enabling me to create scenes that are loyal to myself. Everything envisioned can be deconstructed and reconstructed. The color and structure can work as language in poem or as a note in music and I accordingly become the “poet” and “composer” integrating each section. Those unconnected parts are constantly closely linked and endowed with new life, through which I create and win over time. When the scene becomes mute, the sound echoes and everything presents clearly and orderly. I categorize the vague objects and enhance the categorization; I present and construct the atmosphere with subjective colors and figures. For instance, in Arcadia, I mainly apply purple and black; various shapes of plants in In Tahiti; pink and blue trees in Day and Night etc. I use black as a means of pursuing the pure, plain and night-like contemplation, implying the dignity of life and reflection upon death. The irregular blocks also arise several times, such as the blue beyond the ashes in Night Fire 1, the rock in Mountain Cabin, and the bare land in Winter 1. These remind me of the white sheep scattered on the endless grassland, the plants and rocks across the dessert. Basically, they balance the color, shape and structure, like holes in the heart, which require filling up one by one to reduce any imbalance when the self is confronted by world suffering and predicament.
It has been 2 years since the solo show in 2017. I keep on working and learning from my favorite artists. I have a feeling that I am close to them at some moments; but when I feel satisfied, the distance pulls us away. This feeling encourages me to keep on working. Looking in retrospective, I know I have been ahead of myself in the past no matter how fast or slow I am going, which is very comforting. Time flies in the two alternating feelings. I have been constantly balancing, pursuing and exploring, I have gained something while I have lost something. I hope I will retain the humble, rigorous and artistic vibrance, even though it is an endless journey, never reaching perfection. However, as long as one never stops!
六幅画中除了一张风景，其它都算是植物，虽然是植物但具有静物画的特性，适当表现了广阔的世界观品质。特定的场所中的某物，如《别处的花朵》、《剑麻》、《没开花的吊金钟》虽然没有思考太多，但也希望是有意识的观察取得与回忆交织的产物。 两张葡萄一张是很久前看到过一张黑色的葡萄静物，像在空旷的空间把精神中隐藏的一根神经放在画布上，所以画了一张葡萄是黑色的；另一张我想起了古罗马的夏天，想起了庞(贝)的壁画，所以又画了一张绿色的葡萄。我画这些画把它们当作一种逐渐的自律、令人安宁和救赎性的工作，只是仔细揭示静止对象变化而又富有规律的面相，随着时间的流逝而描绘。《山中小屋》是维特根斯坦在瑞士自己设计和修盖的一个小屋，我特别喜欢这个小屋，他就像维特根斯坦这个人一样， 具有相同的气质，和荣格的湖上小屋如出一辙，这个小屋还有计划继续创作，它是一个精神的家园，纯粹的。
Six Paintings of the Spring
By Lan Zhaoxing
Another year begins, the new and the unknown, the animality of human is thoroughly exposed at this moment. Maybe I am aging or I am afraid of death, still I can nose the breath of vitality, humid air, and the smell of the earth. Everything seems to be prospering, everything has the possibility of a new beginning. Thus, we need a little bit green, not too much particular thought; bright color in the depressing and desolate, and the beating notes in a piece of music.
There is only one landscape painting among the six. The rest of them depict plants, though they have the property of still life painting, and manifest properly a broad worldview. There is not much thought in painting the plants in certain occasion, such as Flowers Elsewhere (别处的花朵) , Sisal (剑麻), and Fuchsia Not Blooming Yet (没开花的吊金钟); though I hope they are products of the entanglement between conscious observation and memory. There are two paintings of grapes. One of them is inspired by a black still life painting of grapes that I have seen long time ago. It looks like a hidden nerve placed on the canvas in a spacious room; so I drew a painting of black grapes. The other one reminds me of the summer in ancient Rome, and of the mural painting of Pompeii; so I drew the other painting of green grapes. I draw pictures, and I consider them as work that is gradually self-discipline, tranquil and as work of salvation. I just carefully reveal the changing yet regular aspects of the still object, depict them as time flows. The Cottage in the Mountains depicts the cabin that Wittgenstein designed and built in Switzerland. I like it very much. It is just like Wittgenstein, it reflects his temperament, just the same case of Carl Jung’s cottage by the lake. And, I have a plan to continue the painting of cabin, a spiritual homeland, and a pure one.
2019年 阿卡迪亚，Tong Gallery+Projects, Beijing
2017年 野火，Tong Gallery+Projects, Beijing
2018 有声儿，Tong Gallery + Projects，北京
1977 Born in Shanxi, China
1997-2001: Bachelor, Sculpture, Colloge of Fine Arts, Shanxi University
2006-2008: Master Course with Equivalent Educational Level, Oil Painting, Tianjin Academy of Fine Arts
2019， Arcadia, Tong Gallery+Projects, Beijing
2017, Wild Fire, Tong Gallery+Projects, Beijing
2017, Art Shenzhen 2017, Shenzhen
2018, Art Busan 2018, Busan
2018, Resonating, Tong Gallery + Projects, Beijing
2018, Wandering, Powerlong Art Center, Hangzhou
By Lan Zhaoxing
For me, art is the only thing that I feel obliged to do and the only thing that I can control in my life. No matter how life goes on, I am so pleased about the existence of art. A straight and rigid line has penetrated throughout these years, from learning painting to present. Beginning with a teenager who wants to be an artist yet has no plan, then followed by gradually constructing step by step, the trajectory of life revolves around this line, sometimes on the left, sometimes right, alongside with regional migration, mental confuse, and self-transcendence. Yet, that line keeps being straight and strict. I consider art equally to religion. I regard art as religion of life, which is divine and ubiquitous. Compared to the belief in pantheism and in the vast cosmos that is predestined and unknown, art is much richer in self-spirit and so-called life meaning.
I think, the departure point of my works is biographic. For me, painting is a process that is beyond the historical tide of social life, and it is a closed individual behavior. In painting, I am confronted with two changeable worlds–the nature and the self, and I choose the elements I need, and endow them with colors and forms, in an attempt to maintain the logical consistence of the intelligent components in the sensual reactions. I admire the sublime and eternality of art works, and reject the mere visualization. I have always being trying to be immersed in my emotional wildness. It is this word—immersion, the configuration of colors and plane sequence of forms that provides a picture the musicality, just as the medieval folk songs in Europe, slow and low, yet pure; also like the ”airs”-repetitive “laboring” music in Classic of Poetry (Shijing); or the simple and straightforward poems from Wei-Jin period. I won’t explore the similarities between painting and poetry. Now, I am comparing their musicality. I am not fond of the literature plot in my works. Because, the story will undermine various possibilities that painting itself conveys.
My paper painting and oil painting are complementary but not coincident. They are unique. I like the array of lines; the repetitive behavior itself brings a kind of balance and generates pleasure of aimless purpose. As the practice of Zen, a simple labor catches me in, and forms its own tension, extension, infinity, silence and desire. The rigidity of pen works very well for this rigid line in paper painting. I want to make it in oil painting, but I am still exploring and I need more familiarity and better communication with materials. I always spend much time in scratching the abandoned pigments when I have not painted for a long time. Somehow, I can feel that I am talking with it softly.
I have been keen on three artists of post-impressionism, who have a profound influence over me, as though they returned to the formalism of Byzantine arts from 19th century. Hence, I have deep love for them and trace back to them. For now, what I am pursuing is between naturalism and abstract art, the sense of order and musicality, and architectural eternality. The certainty and intellectuality in beginning creation, and the very initial feeling should be managed to the end through formal languages. For me, integration also leads to the asymptote that I have been approaching yet will never reach. It is incommensurable but parallel with the real world. I cruise and hesitate between reality and self, but I also have bravery. To my submission, it is a journey of self.
With hundreds of thousands of years’ precipitation, mural painting inspires me a lot, from which I find something I need and pursue, thus affects my creation. No matter Italian mural painting, Egypt painting, or Indian Miniature, or Chinese mural painting in different periods, they can greatly please me. Francesca’s painting present the harmonic sense of geometry and the purity of the forms; Giotto’s and Masaccio’s sublime and solemn; Uccello gracefully combines the perspective and European court ornament; Indian Miniature has its slender lines running through the picture; and Egypt painting usually shows the most unique aspect of object, every detail has a strong sense of order and immovability. I know more about Chinese mural painting and they are more complicated. The color, order, rhythm and line, etc. all make me fascinated. I have developed my love for Song painting. I know more about Chinese mural painting and they are more complicated. The color, order, rhythm and line, etc. all make me fascinated. I have developed my love for Song painting. According to art historian James Cahill, in Sung painting, a classical self-restraint grasps the entire presentation. The artists in Sung dynasty were unbearable about the excessive emotions just as if it was their first time to encounter nature. Having a distinct conception, concentrating on the things to represent, they responded to nature with a surprising and admiring mood. As Poussin painted in 17th century, the picture is restraint and tranquil, imbued with a clear and balanced order; permeated with mild and compromising ration. I appreciate the companionship of my favorite artists, famous or anonymous. They keep my life in studio from being lonely, and they inspire me to realize the importance of the coexistence of self-confidence and modesty.
I am relatively traditional. Confronted with entanglement and complexity of contemporary world and the ferocious shock of fragmented life, I just want to try my best to do what I love and what I can complete. I hold on my own viewpoints, and I don’t drift with the current. I am longing for living a isolated life. It is not a big deal. That’s the world, with people of this kind and that kind, with no absolute truth, no absolute right or wrong, no absolute goodness and evil. For me, what I want to accomplish is clear expression of my own discourse among lots of faces, to create art works that possess independence, rich contents and eternal vitality, leading to infinite possibility.