她们
Her’s
 
潘泓钢&胡有辰
Pan Honggang&Hu Youchen
 

开   展:  2013年4月27日, 13:00 – 22:00
Opening:  2013.4.27, 13:00-22:00 
展览时间: 2013年4月27日—2013年6月27
(周二至周日 10:30-18:00 )
Duration: 2013.4.27-2013.6.27 (Fri.-Wed. 10:30am-6:00pm )
展览地点: 广州市天河区天河路365号天俊阁5层
Venue: 5F, No. 365 Tianhe Rd., Tianhe Dist., Guangzhou, Guangdong
策展人:5Art
Curator: 5Art 
策划/ 主办:5 楼艺术空间
Curated / Hosted by: 5 Art Space
 
 
 
他们还是我们?
 
2009年,潘泓钢和胡有辰还是四川美术学院雕塑系的在校生,他们参加了为年轻艺术家设立的“柯罗默中国当代艺术优秀者奖学金”的评选活动。这一奖项,每年面向全国的学生征集作品。2009年,与“罗中立奖学金”一起,收到了很多的参赛作品。潘泓钢和胡有辰最终入围并获奖。
 
他们的作品之所以优秀,不仅因为是雕塑类的,通过装置呈现思考形式,而是因为这些作品独特地表现了艺术家的精神境界。其作品表达了这一代人的所思所想,且采用高度个人化的手法。评委们(我也是其中一员),一致同意将奖项颁发给两位具有潜力的年轻艺术家。
 
潘泓钢和胡有辰的作品包括一组八个半人形雕塑,但是这些都源自艺术家的想象。每个雕像都被放在了精心挑选出来的树干上,被小心翼翼保存:水分被抽干,这样树皮就可以以自然之美保持完整。这组来自大自然的基座被紧放在一起,但又彼此分离,俨然一片灌木林。为了与艺术家二人创作的作品的非自然本质相一致,树干下方的地则是由沙子形成,而非土壤。
 
看到这些人物,人们不禁被它们那精心打磨的灰色“外皮”而吸引住。无论是全身还是半身像(其中有三件这样的作品),这样的外皮呈现出半透明的蓝色,我们简直能看到表面下的血管,小心翼翼描绘出的细节,迸发出生命的活力。在此,艺术家对材料精心的挑选是非常明显的。他们开始用粘土做成模型,然后使用轻盈的聚合树脂根据模型再造。这种材料对于它所支撑的抛光面而言是非常脆弱的。第一组人物体现了艺术家在抛光上的实验过程,一些闪闪发亮,一些暗淡无光。这种探索,在某种程度上,依然是在进行中。
 
第一组的人物似乎都戴着某种类似头盔的东西,这使得我们产生一种感觉,即使我们跟它们讲话,它们也听不到。这点表现了围绕这些作为个体和群体的人物的那种疏离感。另一点来自物体本身在呈现上的控制,人物的臂膀,都变得畸形化了,失去了本来的面目:这些雕塑中,只有一个是被安上了人的手臂的。其它的两臂处都呈弱小状,如不会飞的鸟的翅根或有袋动物的鳍。这些雕塑,有的直立,有的栖息在木桩上,它们如此相互分离着。艺术家有意令它们失去飞翔的可能,使他们无法离开基座,如此以来,疏离感被再次突显出来,即使这些人物看起来是浑然一体的。这种真实的节制,令观众产生了幽闭恐怖感。
 
最终,令这些人物与我们孤立起来的,是它们自顾自的眼神。无论做出怎样一番尝试,我们依然无法与它们中的任何一个用目光交流。没错,因为这些艺术品是非真实的,即使当它们看起来几乎如此。此外,它们的注视也有意识地偏离了任何交流的可能性,向内而又木讷。
 
艺术家认为:“在作品里,形象是我们的线索,我们用他来传达思想情绪”。
 
也许从这些奇特的形状里,一些观众可以找到漫画书、电子游戏和电影中,他们熟悉的人物影子。然而,无论这些作品背后所受到的影响是什么,最终的形式则与今日中国独生子女这一代的生命体验产生直接呼应。但从某种意义上讲,它们也和中国之外的空间发生共鸣,在整个欧洲,如今有很多孩子是独生子女,生活在电脑时代,电子社交网络控制着他们的生活,这样的社交网络是看不见的的,但却在青少年和社会之间竖起了无形的障碍。在很多方面,年轻的这代已经变成由沮丧、矛盾、甚至可能偏执或受伤的个体组成的脱离社会的群体,正如英国摇滚乐队平克弗洛伊德1979年的影片《迷墙》中所表现的人物一样,这部影片预言了一个人际关系曾经正常而后来个体却陷入迷途的社会。
 
从八件作品组成的第一组中,演变出了后面的作品。从某些方面讲,由于它们形状上的显著原因,甚至比第一组还要拘泥。它们的臂膀,几乎都黏附在一边,或者是如水鸟的蹼趾般连接在身体上。更为静默,更令人印象深刻。它们的生长发育在中途哑然停止,而第一组群体却并未受此困扰。
 
在二十世纪之初,二人所创作的具有魔幻色彩的人物,呈现出可爱的一面,正如那些受到Hello Kitty,日本漫画,村上春树和奈良美智作品影响的年轻一代,其创作卡通的一面并不出乎我们意料。但除了“可爱”外,最能打动观众的则是那种疏离而脆弱之感。在展览空间内,这些塑像相互挨在一起。对观众而言,它们似乎是为了求得安全感或自我防御而挤在一起。观众经过时,它们似乎屏住呼吸,直到确认观众离开、不再注视它们后,心中的石头方才落地,喃喃低语告知彼此。安静到令一切都沉默停滞下来,这仿佛就成为了它们的自然环境;它们更喜欢栖居在半明半暗处。作为观众,站在它们旁边,不禁感到这里似乎变成了一座动物园:但问题是,在这里,究竟谁才是被展出的动物呢,是这些好奇的动物们还是我们自己呢?
 
Karen Smith
Beijing, February 18 2011
 
Them or Us?
–A Project by Pan Honggang and Hu Youchen 

By/Karen Smith

In 2009, when Pan Honggang and Hu Youzhen were under-graduate students of the sculpture department at Sichuan Academy of Fine Art, they participated in an award scheme for young artists—the Earl of Cromer Scholarship Award for Contemporary Chinese Artists . The award, held annually at the academy, is open to students from across the country. In 2009, through its alignment with a similar award scheme operated by the Luo Zhongli Foundation, it received an impressive number of entries. Pan Honggang and Hu Yuzhen won the top award.
 
Their work stood out not just because it was sculptural, and took the form of a well-thought through installation, but because the works seemed uniquely to express an emotional state close to the artists. It was, thus, deemed expressive of their generation, and that used a highly individual approach to articulately that expression. The judges, of whom I was one, were unanimous in presenting these two promising young artists with the award.
 
Pan Honggang and Hu Youzhen’s works comprised a group of eight semi-figurative sculptural forms that were part-human and part-animal, but that were all products of the artists’ imagination. Each of the eight figures was placed on a carefully selected chunk of tree trunk that had been preserved with care: dried to relieve it of moisture, such that the tree bark remained intact along with the natural beauty. This group of nature’s plinths was placed together just close enough, but just far enough apart to suggest a copse of trees. But in keeping with the unnatural nature of the creatures Pan and Hu had created, the ground beneath them was made of sand, not earth.
 
On encountering these creatures, one is immediately struck by their pale delicate “skin”. Whether seen in full figure or as a bust (as three of the individual pieces are) this skin has a uniformly bluish and translucent quality, as if the fine veins and blood vessels that we can see barely beneath the surface, and which have been created, painted, with painstaking care, are vibrating with life. Here, the artists’ careful choice of materials becomes apparent. Having been first completed using clay, they reproduced from moulds using a light weight polymer resin. This material is highly flexible in the surface finishes it can support. This first group of figures also showed the artists in the process of experimenting with various finishes—some shiny, some matt. This exploration is, to some degree, still in progress.
 
All of the figures in this first group wear some kind of head piece, which lends us the impression that even if we speak to them they would be unable to hear us. That motif represents one element of the isolation that surrounds the figures individually and as a group. The second element arises from the sense of physical containment that is suggested by the stunted growths that have been placed where the figures’ arms should be: only one of these sculptures is equipped with arms in the human sense. The rest have some form of stunted growth closer to the wing stubs of a flightless bird or a marsupial flipper. At times standing tall, at times perched on their wooden stilts, these creatures are thus inalienably separated from each other. In “clipping their wings”, the artists literally deny their creations the physical possibility of leaving their perch, thus once again reinforcing the aura of isolation, even as these figures appear to form a group. That sense of physical restriction is experienced by the audience as a sense of claustrophobia.
 
The final element that seals these creatures’ isolation from us lies in their gaze. Hard as we try, we are unable to make eye contact with any of them. Of course, that’s because these artworks are not real, even though at times they almost seem so. That aside, their gaze is consciously deflected away from any potential contact, at once introspective and obtuse.
 
In the artists’ words: “In our works, the form is our baseline, which we employ to convey our emotional state.”
 
Perhaps, in these curious forms, some viewers might find creatures they recognize from comic books, from video games, from films. Yet, whatever the influences that lie behind these works, the final forms produce an aura, an ambience, that speaks directly to human experiences common amongst today’s generation of one-child children in China. But in one sense, they have a resonance that extends beyond China alone, for across Europe, too, today many children are also single children and are equally products of a computer age, dominated by electronic social networks that place invisible but ever present immaterial barriers between these individual adolescents and society. In many ways, this young generation has morphed into exactly that alienated collective of frustrated, conflicted, and potentially paranoid or damaged individuals suggested in the character of Pink in The Wall, British rock band Pink Floyd’s prophetic 1979 vision of a society that looses grip on the place of the individual and what were once defined as normal social relationships.
 
From that first group of eight pieces, a second group has evolved: seven new creatures are as a second generation to the first. In some ways, for obvious reasons of their physical form, these new figures are even more constrained then the first. Their arms, where these exist, almost glued to their sides, or joined to the body like the webbed digits of a water bird. The aura here is more silent, more haunting. The natural development of these creatures stunted in ways that did not afflict the first.
 
Having said that, in line with the aura of this type of artistic production in the early twenty-first century, Pan and Hu’s magical creatures have their cute side, much as we might expect from artists belonging to a young generation fully aware of Hello Kitty, Japanese manga, and the work of artists like Murakami and Nara. Yet beyond this “cuteness”, it is the haunting air of isolation and vulnerability that strikes the viewer most profoundly. In the exhibition space, the individual characters are placed in close proximity to each other. To the viewer encountering them, they appear to have clustered together as a measure of security or self-protection. One can almost hear them muttering words of reassurance to each other as if they wait with baited breath until the viewer has passed on and they are safely beyond the range of a human’s gaze. Quiet to the point of silent, still to the point to stasis, seems to be their natural condition; penumbra their preferred habitat. As viewers, and with these creatures inside, we are made to feel as if the exhibition space has been transformed into some kind of zoo: but the question then becomes which of the occupants, these curious creatures, or us is the animal on display.
 
 
 
潘泓钢
1986生于中国重庆
2009年,毕业于四川美术学院雕塑系。
现工作生活于重庆
 
胡有辰
1984生于中国重庆
2009年,毕业于四川美术学院雕塑系。
2012年,研究生毕业于四川美术学院雕塑系。
现工作生活于重庆
 
个展
2013  
她们:潘泓钢 胡有辰个展,5art五楼空间,广州
2011
“他们还是我们”个展。  魔金石空间, 北京,中国
 
Pan Honggang
1986,Born in Chongqing,China
2009, BA, Sculpture Department ,Sichuan Academy of Fine Arts
Currently Working and Living in Chongqing
 
Hu Youchen
1984,Born in Chongqing,China
2009, BA, Sculpture Department ,Sichuan Academy of Fine Arts
2009, MA, Sculpture Department ,Sichuan Academy of Fine Arts
Currently Working and Living in Chongqing
 
Solo exhibition
2013   Her’s , 5art Space,Guangzhou
2010   Them Or Us, Magician Space, Beijing, China