"Alphabet Tang" (字母汤)
// BLURB //
There’s one thing that connects people throughout history: writing. In fact, history is the story of writing; it is Socrates’s nightmare. He warned us early on that writing would only introduce forgetfulness and the illusion of wisdom. As we gain knowledge, we trust the paper to contain it, while the paper can’t argue for what it states. Writing calls for interpretation and reinterpretation – what’s written is inevitably incomplete and can’t be trusted. Writing is as abstract as it gets. Meaning is arbitrary and the function of written words to deliver that meaning is questionable. Let’s not mention Gu Wenda’s pseudo-characters, Cy Twombly’s illegible strokes, forget about the Dada movement, Man Ray’s wordless poem, and the Tang masters’ wild cursive calligraphy. The story of writing is the story mistrust in writing. Books were read, books were burnt. Texts were written, sense was forgotten. Writing down a line is most importantly not the preservation of a thought, but the documentation of the process of thinking. What remains is merely the evidence of life.
SOLD. Private collection, Phuket.
Unique Edition, Shanghai 2019
Chinese ink and acrylic painting on canvas, teakwood frame
176(W)×141(H)×6.5(D) cm // 14.4 kg (framed)
186(W)×152(H)×12(D) cm // 25 kg
• “Perimeters, Edges, and Walls” at island6 Shanghai Main Space
Owen 欧文 (painting) • Thomas Charvériat (art direction) • Yeung Sin Ching 杨倩菁 (production supervisor) • András Gál (blurb)

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