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Mr.He Shibin Chinese Artist - Wall Art

Mr. He comes from Jiangyong, a small county in Hunan province of southern China, where a unique form of Chinese character was in circulation to record the distinct local Chinese dialect known as Xiangnan Tuhua. This unique set of character was named Nüshu (or Nüzi), due to the fact that it was designed for communication only among female inhabitants to reveal their personal feelings. The Nüshu script originates from the standard Chinese character but forms its own writing system, its slim italic fonts look similar to the oracle bone inscriptions, only with more tokens and patterns. Mr. He himself is not an expert on Nüshu, however, being surrounded and grown up in such an environment, plus the influence from his elder sister, a professional researcher in this field, helped him get a deeper and better understanding than the ordinary Chinese people. Mr. He eventually decided to use Nüshu script as his sources of imaginations, utilized them in more creative manners, and surprisingly made his abstract paintings stand out from the crowds, not only enriching the language form of abstract art, but also rediscovering himself. Mr. He Shibin was born in Jiangyong County in Hunan province, the place of origin where the Nüshu Script was invented. With his elder sister being a notable researcher in the Nüshu filed, no wonder that Mr. He was deeply influenced in the first place in such a native environment and knew almost everything about that peculiar variant of Chinese character. Therefore, choosing the Nüshu Script as his resources of creation is unquestionably natural. His works originate yet are different from the Nüshu Script itself. They are intentional imitations and recreations of the Nüshu Script, through which, Mr. He is able to reflect his hometown as well as his past experience, and in the meanwhile, to express his own thoughts about the contemporary art, by integrating the abstractionism and calligraphy. Instead of paying too much attention to the original connotation of the Nüshu Script, Mr. He centers more of his concentration on the feelings and conceptions about the ancient language, which in return, empowers him with the ability in putting the ancient language at his disposal, to be more specific, his ideas, intuitions, skills and his absolute control over his own paintings, which are more than just calligraphy, but also fine arts about abstractionism and behaviorism. He Shibin, born in 1970s in Jiangyong, Hunan province, is a native where the Nüshu script originated. He used to study at the School of Fine Art in Tsinghua University, and his artworks have been exhibited at many high-level exhibitions like the China and South Korea Art Exhibition, the German Culture Exchange Exhibition, Greece Culture Exchange Exhibition and the art exhibition held at the Imperial Ancestral Temple. Some of his works have also been collected by many organizations including a group of universities in Germany, as well as the Embassy of Greece in China. ******************************************************************************************************************* Description Unique Imitation and Transformation ---- On He Shibin’s Artwork Yang Wei(杨卫,著名批评家) - Famous Coomenter As a form of contemporary culture, contemporary art is increasingly breaking its own borders and evolving towards two different approaches: to expand the medium of representation with the help of the latest scientific and technological means, or to return to the old traditions and seek creative ideas there. The former approach usually creates pilot programs in both language and form, while the latter approach always brings in cultural depth, aspiring and enhancing modern people’s root-seeking consciousness. It is the stimulation of this bipolar approach that some ancient cultural symbols, such as a unique character set, etc. are creatively converted into new visual identities. The latter approach also nurtures a group of Chinese artists who have made in-depth explorations in this field, and among those talents, Mr. He Shibin is an excellent example of an apprentice surpassing his mentor. Although his artistic creations originate from the Chinese characters, and being good at introducing unique calligraphy into his paintings, Mr. He Shibin differentiates himself from other artists of similar approaches by using a rarely seen variant of Chinese character called Nüshu, which literally translates into women's script and was circulated exclusively in a limited area. Mr. He uses Nüshu as the source of creation to enrich his artistic conception of painting, make it look more strange, abstract, and marginalized. People always say as you sow, so shall you reap. Mr. He’s unique approach of finding creative ideas from marginalized cultural forms must lead us to a mystical secret world full of fantastic visual experiences. Mr. He comes from Jiangyong, a small county in Hunan province of southern China, where a unique form of Chinese character was in circulation to record the distinct local Chinese dialect known as Xiangnan Tuhua. This unique set of character was named Nüshu (or Nüzi), due to the fact that it was designed for communication only among female inhabitants to reveal their personal feelings. The Nüshu script originates from the standard Chinese character but forms its own writing system, its slim italic fonts look similar to the oracle bone inscriptions, only with more tokens and patterns. Mr. He himself is not an expert on Nüshu, however, being surrounded and grown up in such an environment, plus the influence from his elder sister, a professional researcher in this field, helped him get a deeper and better understanding than the ordinary Chinese people. Mr. He eventually decided to use Nüshu script as his sources of imaginations, utilized them in more creative manners, and surprisingly made his abstract paintings stand out from the crowds, not only enriching the language form of abstract art, but also rediscovering himself. Actually, Mr. He’s return to himself was not done in one day but a tough process. Like many Chinese contemporary artists, Mr. He entered into the artistic field due to the influence of western art, as that the traces of expressionism and abstractionism can be easily detected in his early works. That said, entering into the filed under the influence of others does not prevent Mr. He from rediscovering himself. He developed a habit of not only constantly trying out new styles, but also occasionally looking back to his past and traditions. It is this looking both forward and backward approach gives him the chance to discover the Nüshu script is his own hometown, from which he got a sudden flash of inspiration, the inspiration that eventually took Mr. He further into his the creative painting world. He then uses the Nüshu script as basic elements, abstracts and reshapes its font structure to start the brand new exploration. Nüshu script finally becomes the fundamental modeling language of Mr. He’s works. He sometimes uses it directly as symbols, other times indirectly for picture composition. However, by using Nüshu script in his paintings, Mr. He does not meant to go back to the script itself, but just to imitate its modeling methods. Just as his emphasis on the form of painting and his obsess with the brush and ink, Mr. He always has ulterior motives, including the one to use Nüshu script as the basic modeling language to form his own unique style, so as to distance himself from western abstractionism and therefore, to find multiple sources for his paintings and instill self-generated cultural connotations. 何世斌,生于七十年代的湖南江永,女书最初的发源地,何世斌的作品也多以此为其主题。江永女书是一套仅在湖南江永县潇水流域的农家女之间流传的书写系统,借源于汉语文字,在汉语的影响下衍化发展自成一系,是世界上唯一的一套女性专用文字。语言文字从来都不只是工具,背后必然蕴含一套完整的文化系统与文化反馈,女书背后的意义也是如此。旧时因被明令禁止学习“男书”(即汉字),不少江永女子便发明了女书,以女书书写的七言或五言律诗相互诉苦。女书的出现就是对在这段特定时期横行的畸形文明而发出的无奈修补。何世斌将女书作为一种特殊的文化符号,在传统宣纸上以黑色水墨书写,辅以在粗重笔触的压迫下而透露出的亮丽彩墨,形成了具有抽象感的当代水墨画。其作品反映了官修正史之外,远在那个时代语境下的平民妇女生活的一斑,它所宣扬的是受压迫的旧时妇女坚持追求的自主权与话语权,更是在黑色的浓墨下所掩盖不住的彩色与光明。 今日美术馆馆长 高鹏 He Shibin was born in seventies in Jiangyong, a small county in Hunan province where Nüshu script originated. Most of Mr. He’s works are themed on this unique ancient Chinese character. Nüshu script is set of writing system between female citizens circulated along the drainage basin of Xiao River in Jiangyong county Hunan province. It originated from the standard Chinese character but eventually formed its own unique system, and is the world’s only character sets designed exclusively for women. In the course of the human civilization, language is never used just as a communication tool. Similar to the Nüshu script, every language has its complete and complicated cultural systems and feedback mechanisms. In the past, women were officially banned from learning standard Chinese character as the males did, which was the reason why a group of women invented Nüshu script to communicate their very personal feelings with others, sometime in five-character or seven-character octaves. In other words, the emergence of Nüshu script was the fixation to the deformed civilization of that particular period. Mr. He Shibin takes the Nüshu script as a unique cultural symbol and then writes them with the brush and ink on the Chinese traditional rice paper known as Xuan paper, combines them with the heavy strokes which reveal very bright colors, and finally makes the entire artwork look like contemporary wash painting, with a full sense of abstractionism. Mr. He’s works not only reflect women’s daily lives of that particular ancient time never seen in official history books, but also reveal women’s struggle against the oppression and pursuit of freedom and liberty, and in the meantime, symbolizes the light and brightness that no darkness can cover.

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