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May 2008: Chinese artist Wen Mujiang gives a few explanations about a new series of woodblock prints. He has not chosen a title yet. The theme is the human spirit. All print images show Chinese men in typical photographic poses. Wen Mujiang explains why he chose this subject.
The artist's statement was edited by artelino and supplemented with a short paragraph explaining the printmaking process and a gallery showing you all the artworks of this series so far known to us.
"Chinese ancient philosophers and intellectuals often put the connotation of "human" on the same level as "sky" and "earth". This was meant as an affirmation and praise of the power of the human spirit.
There is an old Chinese saying:
"Spirit can move mountains and rivers."
This saying however had more in mind exceptional heroes in a very special situation whose spiritual power was so large that it could conquer mountains and rivers.
However what I want to show is different. It is the common spiritual condition of the common man.
My new series includes the prints titled "Free situation", "Enjoyment", "Man", "Man with Dog No.1", "Man with Dog No.2" and "Man with Dog No.3". I am trying to show this common spirit condition of human beings. The characters look like being photographed with a typical "photo face".
The background is decorated with icons that we know from QQ (a Chinese online chat software). The internet has become a common part of our lives. It brings to us advantages. But it also changes our lives. People flocked to this "strong culture" in a hurry. But they forget that this new culture is also full of blunder and fictions.
In this series, the natural and composed personality and the mechanized QQ faces in the background form a strong contrast. This should remind us to pay more attention to the problems that arise from this new culture for the natural condition of the human spirit."
Wen Mujiang in May 2008
(distinctively edited by artelino
The prints are made in woodblock technique. The editions are small to very small (4 copies for "Free Situation"). Wen Mujiang prints with oil-based inks. They paper that he uses is usually a strong, stiff, thick Chinese paper of better quality compared to what most Chinese printmakers use.
To our knowledge the series was titled "Human Condition" after several of the designs had already been published.
Author: Dieter Wanczura
(May 2008, updated May 2009)
The images on this web site are the property of the artist(s) and or the artelino GmbH and/or a third company or institution. Reproduction, public display and any commercial use of these images, in whole or in part, require the expressed written consent of the artist(s) and/or the artelino GmbH.
Works by emerging Chinese artists in BUYDIRECT.