Joining Ricefield from Shanghai with a degree from Xi’an Academy of Fine Art specialising in Oil Painting, as well as Calligraphy, Chinese Ink Painting, Silkscreen print and jewellery design, followed by a Fine Art course at the University of Art London and now studying towards her Masters degree in Fine Art at Glasgow School of Art, Yue Xu is a new addition to our talented team of Chinese artists.
She was awarded First Class scholarships from 2008-2010 and her work has been exhibited in various exhibitions including Xi’an Academic of Fine Art Sketch Exhibition, Contemporary Art School College Student Exhibition, Guangzhou College Student Fair, Xi’an Academic of Fine Art ‘Time Evidence’Exhibition and Grace & Clark Fyfe Gallery in Glasgow ‘ Word/Play’ Exhibition. Her work is both diverse and creative. She is inspired by her personal experiences growing up in China. Here is an excerpt from an interview regarding her recent exhibition:
At the time of the simplification of Chinese writing movement in China, my father was in his first year of elementary school. He said Chinese people need to spend a lot of time to memorize over 4000 characters. For example, in one semester they learned a lot of characters but by the next semester the government published a new way to write certain characters, so you need to relearn them and maybe next semester some of these words wouldn't exist anymore. That really confused me about the culture. Historically, the Chinese people think that the world really is important, like it was made by the nature. But during this time, I was really confused about culture. So since my arrival to the UK, the main purpose of my work is not to address serious cultural concepts, but I do try to use my work to change people's way of thinking about culture. That is why my work always play around 2 different concepts. For example I have a conceptual framework for inscriptions on bone which are the earliest forms of Chinese handwriting that we know and a different one for Emoji on iphone. When I merge these two concepts together into one work such as 'Stone from other mountain', neither works. I draw Chinese landscape and write inscriptions with Chinese ink and pasted Emoji on toilet paper which express a no borders universality of using Emoji.
Calligraphy Workshops with Yue Xu
I believe people like to use concepts to deal with problems, and this is really a rather lazy way of thinking. My works especially bother intellectuals and those who rely on conceptual thinking. For example 'Spiral', words written by a mirror symmetry. The work makes no sense: the characters are my inventions, made up of elements of real Chinese characters reconfigured in graphs that nobody can read. And then, as a viewer draws closer, everything changes, it is a image which becomes everything you imagine. And according to my research the development of language like the development of culture, it progresses like spiral from simple to complex and now go back to simple. In the future, people will create more new words to adapt to the new life environment.
Painting Workshops with Yue Xu