It feels like my exhibition opening happened so long ago because immediately afterwards I went travelling with Andy for 10 days. We went back to Shanghai, but this time we mostly did the sights rather than the Art, except for the Sean Skully solo show at the Himalayas Art Gallery (that reminds me, I have a great photo of a lady cleaning his sculpture with a feather duster and buckets catching the drips from the leaking roof…)
We also went to Wuzhen, Hangzhou , Guilin and Yangshuo and I’ve put together just a few pictures from our travels which hopefully describe something interesting rather than just picturesque, in an attempt to not just go parading my holiday photos Facebookesque. A couple are from the train from Shanghai to Hangzhou which gave me a fantastic opportunity to take pictures and a bit of video as the windows were really big. I wish I could have filmed the whole journey.
Just before my exhibition opening I was interviewed by a journalist from a local newspaper. She asked me to describe the landscape of Shanghai and Xiamen from an artist’s point of view. I wasn’t entirely sure what she was getting at and also how to describe what I felt without offending anyone. When you describe China’s landscape it sounds destructive but when you experience it, it is compelling. I’m still not entirely sure if it is ok to blow up mountains. My gut instinct says it is not, but it is very simple to make decisions with your heart and China’s situation is by no means simple and cannot be considered without taking all sorts of historical factors into account.
At the exhibition opening I spoke to a young artist called Rhubarb who I had met before at an exhibition at the nothing gallery. He told me there is a Chinese Fairytale about a man who wanted to move a mountain and he then sent me the story in an email which said:
I am Rhubarb, that guy have told u the fairy tales about remove the mountain.
The name of that story in chinese is 愚公移山
Once upon a time, there was a large mountain called Tai-Ying which sat between Old Man Yu and the nearest village. Every day, Old Man Yu had to walk many extra miles in order to circle around Tai-Ying, and finally he decided to simply move the mountain out of his way.
Old Man Yu called together his children and grandchildren. “I am going to move Tai-Ying.”
The family cheered.
The youngest stood and asked where the moutain could be moved.
Old Man Yu thought for a second. “I will dump it in the sea.”
Again the family cheered, and promised to help make his dream a reality.
Now, as everyone knows, it is no small matter to move a mountain, and this mountain was no exception. After a year, only a tiny portion of Tai-Ying had been carted to the sea.
A shopkeeper in the village laughed at Old Man Yu. “Your dream is foolish. You are old, and Tai-Ying is monstrous.”
Old Man Yu shook his head and smiled. “You are right, but your vision is short. I have children who have children who will bear more children. As time goes on, I get stronger and the mountain grows weaker. Tai-Ying will be moved.”
And so it was.”
But in the real ending of original version is – God heard about this, then send two servant go there and take the mountain away. Because god also shock by old man’s action.