Created with materials found on-site at QingCun Artist Residency in Changzhou, China
Created with Chen Chen
Chen Chen, a Chinese printmaker-sculptor and I joined forces to create these consecutive pieces at QingCun Artists Residency. The work we made was built on both our natural inclinations and artistic skillsets. Combining the practice of printmaking with painting, the wet paint on the surface of one piece was transferred onto raw canvas. Similar to a monoprint, the image was pressed by hand with a heavy stone. Its natural weight was enough to imprint the painted marks from the wooden surface onto the canvas. The canvas was then stretched over a wood frame and the stone buried in a slit in the cloth’s center. The heaviness of the stone is held in place by the tension in the canvas. The wood panel became a second piece that stands in space as a two-sided sculptural painting. One side is tamer and created with patience. The other side was created in a mad frenzy and includes elements of ephemera found in the environment. Both pieces use found materials—stone, wood, and canvas—as well as purchased materials such as acrylic, ink, charcoal, needle and thread. The predominantly natural tones in the color palette was carefully agreed upon by Chen Chen and I. Parts collide, parts avoid crossing the line, and parts are etched in deep with a strong hand. The resulting Improvisations reflect the interdependent nature of our bond and the interplay of our perspectives and personalities.