登錄 | 登記 | 搜尋
English / 中文

媒體合作夥伴

Wu Haizhou


Araki Nobuyoshi
Au Hoi Lam
Cai Guoqiang
Cao Hui
Christian Schoeler
Fan Mingzheng
Fang Lijun
Feng Zhengjie
Han Jinpeng
Huang Jia
Ji Dachun
Jia Juanli
Jia Pingxi
Jiang Huajun
Justin Cooper
Kang Haitao
Klavdij Sluban
Li Hongjun
Liang Quan
Lui Chun Kwong
Luo Quanmu
Marc Riboud
Ng Kwun Lung Tony
Parry Ling Chin Tang
Qu Guangci
Roger Ballen
Shen Liang
Sheng Shanshan
Song Chen
Song Kun
Sui Jianguo
Tan Jun
Tan Ping
Tian Tian
Tsang Chui Mei
Unmask
Vivian Poon
Wang Chuan
Wei Qingji
Wei Yan
Wu Di
Wu Haizhou
Xia Xiaowan
Xiong Yu
Yan Shanchun
Yin Zhaoyang
Yu Aijun
Zach Gold
Zhangjian

An Ever-changing Life

By Feng Boyi

 

In general, Wu Haizhou’s works do not directly reflect societal and political topics, but rather depict scenes and situations of everyday life through a collection of sentimental imagery. Using gray hues and fine textured brushwork, his works subconsciously express a placement in time and a shadow of history and memory, and reveal as a recollection of the past, of his individual experiences and memories. Like old, yellowing pictures, his works give us a bare and lonely feeling, extending into gloominess. Elements of his style have their roots in his educational background at the high school, undergraduate and graduate programs of Central Academy of Fine Arts. Because he doesn’t seek to show “cultural” symbolism in his subjects, his mode of expression emphasizes the richness and details of individual memories, giving his canvases layered emotions and scenes from everyday life.

 

Our day-to-day experiences have long been neglected by artists looking for grand subjects; the value, necessity and the possibilities for creativity in everyday life have always been questioned. This in itself gives the artistic reflection of everyday life a reason for being. Or we can say that because the grand historical narrative is trapped in hollow platitudes, art confers a necessity and value on everyday life. Artists are accustomed to relating their own inner experiences, which although a part of the experience of every life, are only connected to an individual sense of self. The difference in Wu Haizhou’s works is that they are not only extremely individualized daily experiences, but also reflect social content and recall a shared memory. We can say that he is not only a participant in life, but also a spectator. Looking at the larger pictures, none of us have a fixed destiny; our identities are always changing and crossing through intertwined space.

 

Cultural is not, or not only, conventions of reality, not a long-used symbolism or a concept and explanation fixed by ideologies, but more people’s daily life based on the freshness and originally of every day. So the “biodiversity” of culture is not only a result, but also a process. Wu Haizhou’s works focus on man’s actual situation and man’s possibility for future development. They draw viewers into the reality and memories depicted in the scenes.  “Memories” are attempts to retain past experiences, and create a barrier to the loss of those experiences. These remembered images are then reconstructed as visual memories of the artists. Looking at his works from his perspective, his art is a realistic reconstruction of memories, a metaphysical transcendent performance. And so Wu Haizhou’s artistic language strengthens and emphasizes our common understanding, and examines the banality of every life. This deeper truth that hides behind an obvious truth gives a resonance and shock to our spirits.

 

Wu Haizhou believes parks are vanishing,

nostalgia for parks rising

By Wang Shutong

 

When high-rises, flyovers and expresses invade more and more of a city’s space, parks tend to become more and more of a luxury. Pitiful suburbanites can only recall days spending their leisure time in these vanishing pockets of nature amid vast and sprawling, concrete jungles.

 

Wu Haizhou’s solo exhibition The Public Unknown attempts to help its audience recall these artifacts of a bygone era, hopefully enabling viewers to recall their most vivid and nostalgic memories if playing in parks years and years ago.

 

As a graduate of a mural painting department at the Central Academy of fine Arts, the 32-year-old artist told the Global Times he had been seeking out true art for more than 20 years. “I’m just what you could call a ‘small potato,’” he said. “But every little potato has his or her own memories of the past, fresh in their minds forever, especially in such a dull and tasteless world.”

 

Wu said he keeps a close eye on nature and the everyday lives of people. He added that his solo exhibition was not merely to arouse a sense of urgency to protect the environment, but to awaken people’s long lost memories.

 

Upon looking closely at Wu’s canvases, viewers may be surprised to find that all the figures depicted in his paintings are either blurry faced or only able to be seen from the back. He said he does this to imply that people can’t always remember their experiences in a way they would like to.

“I take inspiration from everyday life, and I started painting parks 10 years ago,” Wu said. “My interest in parks is only getting stronger and stronger.”

 

Those Days

—— A Dialogue on “The Public Unknown”

 

Jiang Yuehong (Q – Questioner)  Wu Haizhou (A – Answerer)

Q:When was your first park visit in your memory?  
A: As for my first visit, I hardly recall it now. However, there were certain scenes related to the first park in my mind. It was about how I played there, such as sliding over the sliding board of a huge elephant and riding over a rotating iron facility, and so on. That facility wasn’t the same as the merry-go-round today. What I still remember best is one spring outing. A spring outing in those days could be a park visit or a martyr cemetery visit. We would take some bread or the likes for lunch, feeling very excited. The first visit I remember is that spring outing our teachers arranged for us. I finished my lunch and went to ride that rotating facility. When the riding was over, I vomited all that I had eaten before. I remember it very deeply. It is my first visit, I think, my first park visit marked with an unforgettable physical experience.

Q:In your memory, when did you go to parks oftenest? Why? And how did you spend time there? 
A:As for my oftenest period, I’m sure not my childhood. I think it is the period when I studied in the middle school (affiliated to Central Academy of Fine Arts), where I had my first romance. I mean it was a romantic period that a boy and a girl both for the first time accept the love of each other explicitly. Since the school was located in the Wangfujing area and pretty small, my girl friend and I often went to the parks nearby for fun, such as the Beihai Park and the Houhai Park. It was very convenient for us. We also went to a small garden next to the Art Museum, where there were some amateurs singing there, playing music there, or drawing sketch there. I think such an atmosphere there during those days was much better than today. We usually went there after school. What I remember about those parks of those days is not only about their insides but also those streets or paths we once took to the parks, those experiences we once had along the streets or the pats to the parks. Inside a park, we mostly strolled around. Meanwhile I took photos. I have still stored all those photos by now. At that time, I had a 135mm camera, a YASHIKA. It cost me RMB¥1135 Yuan. There was always a sense of warmth during those days, I think, although it just lasted one year and half. I also remember such a going-to-a-park desire lingering in my mind almost everyday during those days. Where there was a way farther, where we took. We used to ride a bike along the farthest way from a park back to our school.

Q:In your opinion, what are those scenic views, people and events related to a park you could hardly forget? 
A:I think wherever there is a park, there must be water and pavilions. I don’t think the Nan-hu Park (the South-Lake Park in English) is a park, ’cause there is no water. I’m insisting on such a point. What I remember is that we would surely go to a park on holiday whenever time allowed in my childhood. Perhaps it was because there were no other sites of entertainment and not many restaurants in those days. That Nan-hu Restaurant near our house might be the earliest one. The city of Anyang  is small. There are only two parks there which are the People Park and the Sanjiaohu Park ( the Triangle-lake Park in English ). They can even be located via a google mapping on internet today. 
My grandparents are from the town of Shaoxing. When they were young, they worked in Shanghai. They worked in a factory of underclothes. About in 1950s, the factory was moved to Anyang and all my family moved there as well. We lived in a courtyard limited to the people who were only from the provinces of Jiangsu or Zhejiang. My grandma was such a lady who would never change her accent. When she was alive, I was capable of understanding some Shanghai dialect. I remember once a neighbor brought kind of olives back from Shanghai and My grandma gave me one. There must have been not only one for sure. However, there seemed only one she gave me in my mind, seemingly very rare. It was a brown olive, and it tasted salty and sweet. Then we moved to a new place just beside the Sanjiaohu Park. I remember that my family usually went to the park taking photos.

My grandma also went there with us. A park meant a setting for photos during those days. It seems that a park was the only and right place for you to take photos. That was the way at that age. I have renewed lots of the old photos of those days. They prove it as well. Even the setting applied in a photo shop was a park as well. During those days, taking a photo as a souvenir was extremely necessary and important to everyone and a park was the only right place for it. There was no other choice for it at all, not like today. I still remember once my uncle the fourth led me to a park with his family and we took some photos. It was the time when a kind of dress with a turn-down collar of feather was in fashion and all of us favored such a dress, so such a dress was worn by us respectively for a photo. What I mean is that there was just one dress, everyone had a turn to wear it and took a photo with it. The photos of my mama in her youth were also taken in the park. There was a watch on her wrist you see, shown like this. Such a watch must be displayed out in the photos in those days, as you know.

Besides, my teenage was an age of “little naughty boys”. We would go to a park for a peek of those adult couples in love. It was sort of excitement. There was a swimming pool in the park in those days, but it is already gone now. It is in that pool where I learnt how to swim by myself. Going there for swimming was a good reason while going there for fun was a secret one. I would go to learn how those elder brothers hooked their girls in the park. Well, what are those shining days! We lived in a big courtyard, even though I was the only son of my parent, I grew up in kind of a community. A community life allows an inter-impact of different ages. For instance, an elder boy would smoke before you.

Those impacts would satisfy your expectation and imagination about your own growth-up. There were so many children in the courtyard. During a summer holiday, we would go to a park together every free night so as to have a peek of those couples in love. We all felt very exciting exactly. Once we were discovered, the disturbed man took off one of his shoes right away throwing it over us. I was extremely cheered-up by it those days. I must have been there late on. However, I hardly figure it out clearly in mind yet.

Q:What came into your first impression of Beijing? How did you like those parks in Beijing?
A:That first time is so deep that it remains very fresh in my memory. It was at my age of five. My eldest aunt led me to Beijing. It was a pass-by trip. We went to the Tiananmen Square. It was a terribly windy day. I was even blown down to the ground tearing my trousers out with a hole on it. At the railway station of Anyang, my mama came to pick me up. When she asked me “Do you miss me?” I said not and mentioned to her about that hole of my trousers. The memory isn’t very clear now, but that hole is still there in my mind. There was another park visit in Beijing. It was during the SARS period in China. I went there with my girl friend. We took a taxi drive from Huajiadi to the Beihai Park. It was a smooth drive and there were few visitors in the park. We even rowed a boat. It seems that the whole park was open exclusively to us. One more visit was during my college life, or maybe during my high school period, I’m not quite sure now. Once those pals of my childhood came to Beijing and visited me. It was a hot day and we went together to the Summer Palace

Q:What does the word “park” usually remind you of?
A:Memory. In 2008, I held my personal exhibit named “Here & There” in Aschaffenburg, Germany. It is a very small city with a river cross, just like a park. I walked by the river with some feelings floating in mind. There was a sense of warmth inside. However, I shall admit that there are certain regrets about those parks in my memory. Well, now I think those regrets are kind of wealth to me. Without those regrets, there couldn’t have been these creations of mine.

 

Q: What is your first piece on the park theme? Could you tell us how you produced it?
A: It was in 2002, or perhaps in 2000. It was an old photo in which I held a toy gun in a park that I took out for a painting creation. I painted it with no special intention in mind. Perhaps it was because I had once watched some pieces of Gerhard Richter somewhere being excited by his ideas. I might have been impacted by him somehow. He was a stimulus to me first. I got a documentary sense from his creations. After that, I had a look of my old photos and wanted to paint one of them. Then I started painting it. When I finished it, I was very satisfied with it. It was done much better than my original expectation. Since then, I has put it away for a while. Several years ago, the boss of that German gallery came and took a look of my paintings. He liked that one and bought it. In addition to that one, he also bought other two pieces.

A special intention I mean here refers to a clear idea of painting pieces for those art buyers. However, it seems that I have always kept painting subconsciously. I think it must be Year 2007 that I started to focus on the park theme consciously. I have painted them for no special purpose in mind. I have also painted some still lives and called on certain models for my creations as well. I have painted my pieces mostly due to a kind of sense, but with no direction-sense. There is a library in the Middle School (affiliated to the Central Academy of Art). I have been there reading those collected art albums and magazines. There was an exclusive art album respectively published by every province or region all over China during the 10th anniversary of the foundation of the People’s Republic of China. There are some pictures of industrial manufacture in those albums I have read, but they are not my interest. Oppositely, I am touched by those pictures about the urban life of those days and find it mostly related to parks. I have taken photos of all those pictures. From the pictures, I can identify the perception of our parent generation about a park. I think we are sharing with them certain perception of a park somehow. When I was a little boy, my mama brought me to a park. I think she would really enjoy the time very much as we are. For example, she told me about that watch. When they took photos in a park, although there was just one watch, each of them would wear it respectively for his or her picture. If there was a nice dress, each of them would also have put it on for a while in turn. Thus a special perception behind such a behavior was conveyed out.

 

Wu Haizhou believes parks are vanishing, nostalgia for parks rising

Source: Global Times     08:56 July 26 2010

 

When high-rises, flyovers and expresses invade more and more of a city’s space, parks tend to become more and more of a luxury. Pitiful suburbanites can only recall days spending their leisure time in these vanishing pockets of nature amid vast and sprawling, concrete jungles. Wu Haizhou’s solo exhibition The Public Unknown attempts to help its audience recall these artifacts of a bygone era, hopefully enabling viewers to recall their most vivid and nostalgic memories of playing in parks years and years ago.

As a graduate of the mural painting department at the Central Academy of Fine Arts, the 32-year-old artist told the Global Times he had been seeking out true art for more than 20 years. “I’m just what you could call a ‘small potato,’” he said. “But every little potato has his or her own memories of the past, fresh in their minds forever, especially in such a dull and tasteless world.”

Wu said he keeps a close eye on nature and the everyday lives of people. He added that his aim with his solo exhibition was not merely to arouse a sense of urgency to protect the environment, but to awaken people’s long lost memories.

Upon looking closely at Wu’s canvases, viewers may be surprised to find that all the figures depicted in his paintings are either blurry faced or only able to be seen from the back. He said he does this to imply that people can’t always remember their experiences in a way they would like to.

“I take inspiration from everyday life, and I started painting parks 10 years ago,” Wu said. “My interest in parks is only getting stronger and stronger.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artwork
Exhibitions