Liú Yung-Jen Solo Exhibition SINCE1991-PRESENT

Liú Yung-Jen Solo Exhibition SINCE1991-PRESENT

Curator: Chung Chinghsin
Reception:2015.01.10 15:00

The Saturation of Breathing

If one were to think of a keyword to describe the works by Liú Yung-jen, “Breathing” would come to mind due to its obvious importance and association. Each breath in and out symbolizes the filtering of unwanted impurities to leave behind purity. With the multi-identity of an artist, curator, and writer, how does Liú balance, compromise, and subtly link together each relationship? We can see in his works that it is often due to his search for an outlet.

In Taiwan, Liú focused on ink painting for his studies in the fine arts at university. Afterwards, he traveled to Italy to continue his study of art for eight years. For him, the transitions and learning during this period did not just serve as outward observations, but also inward reflections. An open and inclusive mind enables his images to be sometimes vast, while other times mysterious. The repeatedly stacked colors, causal and rhythmic Eastern brush strokes, and even shapes with room for imagination all serve as expressive objects. The development of various forms are simultaneously present in his painting series and environmental paintings. In his artist statement, Liú stated, “I am most fascinated by atypical forms arising after representations (the idea of an object) fade. They are the intrinsic forms beneath the surface that arise from the subconscious after intellectual capabilities recede”. The enlightenment of everyday experiences has given him a real and clear form of expression. If the appearance of every shape is a process of abstract or figurative reproduction, then it is better to admit his continued pursuit of a more powerful mental space.

From 1991 to 2014, Liú attempted to find a container to store himself. Originally, this container was ink before changing to oil paint, lead sheets, and beeswax. Upon experiencing the cultural shock between East and West, he retained the courage to develop possibilities for different media. The shackles of his past desire for a breakthrough now instead support the consistency of his present line of creative thought, enabling him to fondly recall and review the experiences of each stage of life.

The movement of all things generates Yang. When movement has reached its limit, it generates tranquility, which in turn generates Yin. And, when tranquility has reached its limit, it generates movement. Movement and tranquility, in alternation, become the mutual source for each other. Liú’s works manifest a seemingly peaceful surface. Each trace of each decisive moment, no matter how hot or crazy, releases the appropriate amount of energy in neutral and quiet tones while also re-creating energy. This familiar rhythm is like the asceticism of Taiji. Viewing the work, Liú Yung-Jen Since 1991-Present , is like reading Ya Xian’s Andante Cantabile, “The necessity of tenderness; the necessity of affirmation.” It is like the necessity of breathing naturally everyday.

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