launching Ekphrastic Assimilations 同画项目

Post-industrial Society has Arrived

I’m taking this moment, after a few months reprieve from work on this blog, to announce the launch of the Ekphrastic Assimilations project. This will involve an exhibition, held at the VALA arts center in Redmond, WA and in conjunction with Ryan James Fine Arts in Kirkland, WA from September 15 through early November, as well as an academic conference to be held jointly by Pacific Lutheran University and the Seattle Asian Art Museum.

Please visit the website to learn more about the project, or check back here, where I will now be posting EA-related updates and information.

 

 

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Yan Li in Yangzi Jiang poetry journal–seriously great photos

Some great photos in the 8/19 Yangzi Jiang 扬子江诗刊 poetry journal’s spread of Yan’s poetry and painting. The 1985 East Village one, which I’ve seen circulating before, is a fine enough specimen, but I’d never seen the 1990 Brooklyn Bridge nor the 1975 Shenyang image. Follow this LINK for complete view of post coupled with paintings.

艺事 | 诗与画·严力

 2015-08-19 严力 扬子江诗刊

严 力 1985 年 于 纽 约 东 村

严力诗人、画家、作家1954年生于北京。1973年开始诗歌创作,1979年开始绘画创作。是1979年北京先锋艺术团体“星星画会”和文学团体“今天”的成员。1984年在上海人民公园展览厅举办了国内最早的先锋艺术的个人画展。1985年从北京留学纽约并于1987年在纽约创立“一行”诗刊,任主编。作品被翻译成多种文字,目前定居上海、北京和纽约。

严力“构思系列”

材料:画布、丙烯

2014.8—2015.7

猫的联想,2014,78×100cm

马戏团,2015,82×110cm
这样的处境怎么办?2015,76×124cm
心的向往,2015,78×100cm
接地气也接香气,2015,80×100cm
画家的春情,2015,80×100cm
我的饮酒历史,2015,120×170cm
幸福总是相似的,2015,120×170cm
无论富裕还是贫穷,2015,64×100cm
秋恋,2015,88×120cm

严 力 诗 选

清明感怀

在清明感怀生命时

发现死亡没带走任何东西

种族、宗教、战争、礼帽、雨伞…….

也没带走悼词和碑文

它仅仅带走了每个人独特的指纹

而手段全都留在了人间

2015.4.5
严 力 , 2012 年 10 月

巧遇

初春去了公园的河畔

因为先辈们早就发现

语言从柳枝上刚刚垂下来时

最适合朗诵

这天还巧遇了世界诗歌日

尽管它并不比其他的节日更出彩

但它被春光勾着手臂的出场像个王

恍惚中我看见

来不及回避的黑暗

都在原地跪了下来

2015.3.21.(献给世界诗歌日)

严 力 , 纽 约 布 鲁 克 林 大 桥 , 1990

负10

以文革为主题的

诉苦大会变成了小会

小会变成了几个人聊天

聊天变成了沉默的回忆

回忆变成了寂寞的文字

文字变成了一行数字

1966—1976

老张的孙女说等于负10

2009.10


严 力 ,“ 我 和 我 的 秘 书 ”, 1991

纽约

没到过纽约就等于没到过美国

但美国人对纽约抱有戒心

到过纽约就等于延长了生命

一年就可以经历其他地方十年的经验

集中了人类社会所有种族经验的那个人

名叫纽约

在纽约可以深入地发现

自己被自己的恶毒扭曲成弹簧

世界上许多有名的弹簧

都出自纽约的压力

与犯罪和股票每分钟都有关的新闻节奏

百老汇的闪烁与警车的嘀鸣

街上的即兴表演

纽约这个巨大的音响设备

让你的肌肉在皮肤底下情不自禁地跳舞

纽约的司机

好象要带领世界的潮流去闯所有传统的红灯

但是

别忘了小费

到过纽约这个社会大学的学生们都知道

这是一个充满了犯罪学老师的地方

学生中间混杂着不少将要一夜成名的

最新的老师

其中

法律的漏洞是律师们最喜欢表现其智力的靶心

住在纽约的蜜蜂们

甚至学会了从塑料的花朵里面吸出蜂蜜

绰号”大苹果”的纽约

这苹果并非仅仅在夏娃和亚当之间传递

而是夏娃递给了夏娃

亚当递给了亚当

大声咀嚼的权力掀起了许多不繁殖后代的高潮

入夜的纽约啊

在吞噬了白天繁忙的阳光之后

早就迫不及待地解开了灯光的纽扣

坦率的欲望

就像所有的广告都擦过口红

妓女

妓女虽然是纽约非法的药

但生活常常为男人开出的药方是:

妓女一名

繁荣就是纽约骄傲的毒品

撩起你的袖子

让繁荣再为你打上一针吧

凶杀虽然很够刺激

但纽约不眨眼睛

纽约纽约

纽约是用自由编织的翅膀

胜利者雇佣了许多人替他们飞翔

多少种人生的汽车在纽约的大街上奔驰啊

不管你是什么牌子的创造发明者

或者你使用了最大的历史的轮胎

但纽约的商人已经在未来的路上设立了加油站

纽约纽约

纽约在自己的心脏里面洗血

把血洗成流向世界各地的可口可乐

1996

严 力 , 1975 年 于 沈 阳

还给我

还给我

请还给我那扇没有装过锁的门

哪怕没有房间也请还给我

还给我

请还给我早上叫醒我的那只雄鸡

哪怕被你吃掉了也请把骨头还给我

请还给我半山坡上的那曲牧歌

哪怕已经被你录在了磁带上

也请把笛子还给我

还给我

请还给我爱的空间

哪怕已经被你污染了

也请把环保的权利还给我

请还给我我与我兄弟姐妹的关系

哪怕只有半年也请还给我

请还给我整个地球

哪怕已经被你分割成

一千个国家

一亿个村庄

也请你还给我

1986


《扬子江》诗刊

大型原创汉语诗歌双月刊

江苏省作家协会主办

秉承“经典、气质、多元”的办刊宗旨

力求全方位展现当代文学作品和汉语诗歌面貌

给不同流派的诗人提供广阔的舞台

见证一线写作的探索与成果

微信扫一扫
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http://mp.weixin.qq.com/s?__biz=MzA5NjExNDM2NQ==&mid=208583771&idx=1&sn=89cbd9ea3c1b4a9c27dfc28ce0feff9a&scene=1&srcid=j0DbYPHRAVP1qSEt22XW&from=singlemessage&isappinstalled=0#rd

Seattle Art Fair




Seattle Art Fair Scene 2 Milan at Seattle Art Fair Yan Li at Seattle Art Fair Seattle Art Fair Scene 1

“I’ve been going to the Venice Biennale for at least a decade and always enjoy the stimulation of seeing the work of new and up-and-coming artists” … “In 2013 I started thinking, ‘what’s keeping us from doing this in Seattle?’”

-Paul Allen (co-founder of Microsoft)

 

Spent part of this past weekend with Yan Li and Seattle-based Chinese artist ZZ Wei at Seattle Art Fair.

Question, as Jen Graves observes in her piece in the Stranger on the subject from over 6 months ago, is whether or not this event is “of and for Seattle,” or, to put it her way, is this a “mother ship” landing for four days in late summer and then just evaporating like the prospect of real rain on the West coast? (to use a regional metaphor).

The answer remains to be seen, I suppose, particularly in terms of impact on the many local galleries and art outfits that were not actually involved in the event. Meantime, many art writers seem to take the position that even the fact that it happened here at all matters. One important note is that some major dealers (referred to as the “triumvirate” Gagosian, Pace, and David Zwirner) have selected Seattle over other notable cities who have had art fairs running now for the better part of a decade (Los Angeles, Dallas, for instance). Seattle has drawn attention as a worthy endeavor, which is a mark of accomplishment of sorts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two more recent poems by Yan Li

56 cm x 78 cm

Patching Stars with Me 从我开始修补

Yan Li is in the Seattle area for the summer. He usually spends such time in New York, but is trying this side of the US mainland for a change of pace. Its slower than he used to, I believe, and this seems to have led to a more contemplative tone in some of his work, as is in evidence from these two poems, graciously translated by Denis Mair, below. I’ve added a few of Yan Li’s more subdued, though also contrasting images to fill out the picture:

严力  21:11

2 New Poems by Yan Li, Tr.by Denis Mair
严力最新诗歌一组(2首)英文翻译:梅丹理

请安静

在一个请安静到
针也不敢掉下来的地方
我把几声质疑声扔了出去
结果连我也被安静吞了进去

如初的安静
假设我重新站在那里
不再乱扔东西
同时向卧在道德里的针学习
可我还是怀疑自己
能否成为一个被安静所邀请的人

2015.6.

PLEASE QUIET DOWN

In a place so quiet
Not even a needle dares to drop
I throw around skeptical remarks
Yet in the end I get swallowed by the quiet

Ah, quietness as if at the origin!
If I could stand there once again
I would stop throwing things recklessly
And learn from the needle hidden in my conscience
But I still doubt whether I could be
Someone whom quietness would invite

一天

我拥有
先天与后天纠缠成一天的日子
每拦下自己的一次笑脸
就会吞下一片后悔药
每删除一个动作
必源于排练过的修养
这一天的每一秒早都写入了
文学经典
每分钟有三十秒的温差一如冬夏
每小时有几场分针追击时针的战争
每半天要发生几次上下午颠倒的错觉
这一天有几百种对太阳的称呼
这一天的半夜
醒来与睡去的人一样多

2015.7.

All in a Day [1]

Within the days I have been given
Innate heaven and latter heaven are entangled
Each time I hold back a grin
I have to swallow a pill of regret
Each deletion of an impulsive act
Derives from rehearsals of self-improvement
The classics of literature have already written
About each second of this day
Each minute has a thirty-degree temperature difference
Just like summer and winter…
Each hour the minute hand chases down the hour hand
Each evening up and down get upturned again and again
This day the sun will be addressed in a few hundred ways
This day in the middle of the night
People will wake and fall asleep in equal numbers

[1] This poem is untranslatable because the word “day” and the word “heaven” are the same word in Chinese.

 

80cm x 100cm

Chinese Dream 中国梦

Yan Li, Recent Works

Zhuanzi With Bird

Yan Li’s poetry and art has been receiving a lot of attention of late in China. Among others, the online poetry portal New Poetry Canon 新诗经started in 2012 by Gao Shixian, ran a lengthy piece (#067 May 15) containing many new poems. The opening introduction to Yan’s work also includes his recent work on the Autumn Moon festival, running annually in Beijing. That introduction as follows:

严力

严力:(1954—)祖籍浙江宁海,出生于北京,旅美画家、纽约一行诗社社长、朦胧诗代表诗人之一。1973年开始诗歌创作,1979年开始绘画创作。是1979年北京先锋艺术团体“星星画会”和文学团体“今天”的成员。1984年在上海人民公园展览厅举办了国内最早的先锋艺术的个人画展。1985年从北京留学纽约并于1987年在纽约创立《一行》诗刊,任主编。2009开始主持每年一次的北京中华世纪坛中秋国际诗歌会。严力出版的有:诗集、中短篇小说集、长篇小说、散文集、画集等二十多本。画作被上海美术馆、日本福冈亚洲美术馆、以及私人收藏家收藏.作品被翻译成多种文字,目前定居上海、北京和纽约。

Yan Li: (1954-) native of Ninghai, was born in Beijing and has had long residences in New York, Shanghai and other cities. He began composing poetry in 1973, and in 1979 also joined both the avant-garde Stars artist and Today writers and artists collectives. In 1984 in Shanghai People’s Park Hall he held his first one-man show, in fact the first one-man show of avant-garde art in contemporary China. In 1985 he moved from Beijing to study in New York, and in New York in 1987 founded One Line. In 2009 he began hosting the annual Mid-Autumn Festival China Millennium Monument in Beijing international poetry meeting. Yan Li has published over 20 collections of poetry, short stories, novels, essays and other arts-related works. His paintings have been collected by Shanghai Art Museum, Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, and private collectors. Works have been translated into many languages, currently we live in Shanghai, Beijing and New York.

 

Here, as well, the first poem, a short, 2-poem sequence, actually, with my translation:

 

1

对简单的形象

我一直很有亲近感

比如板凳和鞋拔子

唯有对门一直不敢轻信

主要是门后太复杂了

我还听说

为此有人在制作门的时候

特意往里面加进了敲门声

那是干什么用的呢

几十年过去了

我觉得真的很管用

门要时常敲敲自己的内心

 

DOOR 

1.

I’ve always felt close to

Those simple shapes

Like benches or shoe-horns

Only doors I don’t approach lightly

Mostly for the complexity of what lies behind them

I’ve heard that

When doormakers make doors

They often have to add a couple of knocks inside

What can that be for?

After a few decades

I discover they’re really useful

Because doors too need to knock now and again

on the doors to their own hearts

 

 

2。

关在门里的门

是卧室的门

关在门外的门

是家的大门

而从来不用关的那扇门

还没诞生

 

The door in the door

Is the bedroom door

The door outside the door

Is the front door

And the door that never needs closing

Has yet to be born

Poetic Survivors (诗意的幸存者) exhibition

We Are Ourselves History 我们自己就是历史 

the “poetic survivors”

POET-ARTISTS at it again.

Laying vigorous claim to the hopelessly untranslatable  诗意 (“poeticalness”?–or shall we just say ‘poetic’), the poets of the Misty generation, led again by Yan Li and friends, are taking the stage as “painter-poets,” full of nostalgia for the days of old (26 years, to be precise), but also with an eye to the future of Chinese painting and poetry. In this forward-looking respect I find the most promise for such endeavors, a slow moving “movement,” to be sure, but the conjoined media endeavor of painting (and photography) and poetry have two things going for it: a robust tradition and unfadable modernity, the latter residing in the former, curiously enough.

This exhibition, title The Poetic Survivors 诗意的幸存者 , is on a larger scale than many iterations past, with some new members in the line-up. In particular is the calligraphy of Tang Xiaodu 唐晓渡, long-time critic and cultural figure whose visual art I had never seen before this collection emerged. Also notable is the preface to the exhibition written by Yang Lian, who is not often so closely engaged with goings-on inside China. The funding will carry this exhibition through numerous cities over the next 12 months, among them and besides Shanghai where the operation kicked off in November, will be Beijing, Shenyang, and Dalian.

The seven-person lineup this time rather different from previous “Poets Group” (诗派) of painters, with only Mang Ke 芒克, and Yan Li 严力 the constant members. They are here joined by Tang Xiaodu 唐晓渡, as mentioned, but also You You 友友, Guo Changhong 郭长虹, Li Li 李笠 and  Jie Wei 解危.

 

As to the contents, the photographic images by Li Li, are surely arresting. For instance:

 

Li Li photo

Morning Mirror 晨镜

 

 

and:

 

Li Li Photo

Coming Home #1 回家之一

 

 

But nonetheless I’m most impressed by Mang Ke’s painting, which evolves in slow but also deliberate and oddly self-assured steps. The earlier work was completely abstract, seeming landscapes with only faint hints of representation such as:

Mang Ke

2013-18 98x78cm


Gradually, the landscapes acquire more acute dimensionality, and often water banks, hills and other discernable features of the phenomenal world. In this case, a bank of trees by the water:

 

Mang Ke

2014-15 118x75cm

 

 

Nonetheless, Mang’s titles are still rigorously abstract: “2014-15”. The words he reserves for poetic work, which is not represented anywhere in this particular volume.

Chinese reporting on the exhibition below:

 

 

http://culture.ifeng.com/a/20141216/42730221_0.shtml

3f9a064b77d01dd 8a8aaf9ad47e9ed d24a383401233e8

凤凰网文化讯 2014年12月14日下午2时,“诗意的幸存者”–中国当代诗人“视觉艺术展”,在位于上海浦东三林老街的中道(上海)艺术馆启幕。

此次巡展由作家高晖担任总策展人,诗人杨炼为艺术总监,并由上海德重文化艺术有限公司、辽宁衡德投资公司联袂主办。上海站策展人由江旭担纲。参展人有中国朦胧诗的代表人物芒克、唐晓渡、严力,有作家兼画家友友、诗人摄影家李笠,还有诗人学者郭长虹、诗人画家解危等七人组成。

除上述参展诗人艺术家外,还有文学批评家、诗歌批评家、美术批评家、诗人、画家、上海各界代表及瑞典国驻上海总领事馆官员等共计110余人参加了此次活动。

著名诗歌评论家唐晓渡现场发言

策展人高晖说,此次展出的诗人视觉艺术品,关乎诗人个人心灵史也就是1980年代中国朦胧诗歌史的补充和延续。从这些视觉艺术作品里,总能看到那种灵动、奇异而温暖的东西,这种东西就是我们常说的诗意。当下,中国专业书画界乱象丛生,恢复中国视觉艺术作品精神本体性成为当务之急,呼唤心灵参加创作,其实,一个创作者的油彩、笔墨、线条、焦点,就是自身内在生命状态的透析。谁能与心灵一并还乡、谁愿意和历史一起成长、谁能拥有绵长的诗意,谁就是当然的“诗意幸存者”。

启幕仪式结束后,接续举行了“诗意的幸存者”–当代中国诗人视觉艺术研讨会暨诗歌朗诵会和中国当代诗人艺术档案馆(南馆)揭牌仪式。参展诗人纷纷登台朗读自己的代表诗作,场面感人。观众杨昕佳对记者说,我非常感动,这样的场面充满正能量,使我感觉又回到了1980年代。在研讨会上,与会的诗人艺术家、美术批评家,就此次巡展的诗歌与视觉艺术的关系、视觉艺术的精神出处、诗意在视觉艺术作品里的正确表达特别是此次巡展目的、意义、持续方式等方面进行了深入研讨。

诗人芒克与杨炼共同揭幕

最后,中国当代诗人艺术档案馆(南馆筹备处)由诗人芒克揭牌。该馆的建立,将成为保存中国当代朦胧诗歌史的现有文献的重要载体,将切实推进这段历史文献的搜集、整理及后续研究工作,为幸存的诗意提供一个“恒温箱”。策展人高晖认为,诗意总会被筛选而成为时代的精神高度,当我们丈量一部文学史的时候,其实主要是在翻拣那些诗意元素。这些视觉艺术作品,对于诗人个体而言,完全是诗歌的另外一种写法,而且几乎就是一首长诗的容量。

据了解,巡展启动后将开始不定期接续巡展,从明年3月上旬离开上海,将在北京、沈阳、大连、重庆、成都、济南、江西等地巡展。最后,相关作品和档案将分别保存中国当代诗人艺术档案馆的上海馆和沈阳馆。

美术批评家杨卫认为,此次巡展本身就是2014年的一个标志性文化事件。这次巡展,是中国当代诗人视觉艺术作品的首次集体亮相,充满着诗人艺术家对历史、人生、艺术的立体式反思与回顾,其本身就是一首不同寻常的“小长诗”。此次巡展将推动中国视觉艺术精神本体性的凸显,重新厘清视觉艺术创作者与自身内在生命状态的联系方式,进而指向其整体精神特质,从而拓宽当代文人视觉艺术作品的内含和外延。

杨炼撰写画展序言《诗意的幸存者》:

中国文人画,自元代始,其思想、美学特征,质言之,一曰民间性,汉族文人离弃对官方权力的依赖,由被迫而主动地深入民间生存处境,使艺术内涵愈加饱满。二曰文化性,汉文化的深厚资源,经由文人独立思考和重构,不仅没沦为粗疏,反而激发出超强能量,形成无数风骨、神采兼备的美学杰作。这民间、文化二元互补,彼此印证,转型至今,便是本人那句“独立思考为体,古今中外为用”。以此为根,我们的人生和创作,从未离开这个真传统、活传统。

上世纪八十年代初,华夏长梦初醒,“朦胧诗”并不朦胧,写诗爱诗若不知芒克、唐晓渡、严力诸君大名,简直不可思议。在京都,友友和我,出入诗人聚会,何止诗作青春四射?诗人和女友也个个英俊倜傥、美艳夺目。小字辈李笠本来就是帅哥,而那时尚未结识的郭长虹、解危,想来也均在他处驰骋。1988年“幸存者”诗人俱乐部,被同住北京劲松的芒克、晓渡和我们催生而出,一册油印诗刊、一百元外汇卷“巨款”赞助,掀起余震不断的社会海啸。那时我们谁能想到,二十六年后,会戴着另一圈迥然不同的画家光环,聚会到一起?二十六年啊,时间空间,如我们一样成了鬼魂,轮回在认不出的地方。中国,只剩几个老地名。“全球”,转眼扎进这土地每个角落。芒克诗题“今天是哪一天?”我出国前写过:“这儿是哪儿多远?”美貌不再,沧桑已至。我们自己就是历史。

但,多远?是否该改成:多近?潜入一行诗、一张画中的文人精神传统那么近!我们每个人的人生、历史、思想、艺术,本身就是一首小长诗。年轮兑换成了思想,而挑战威权话语的个性诗意不变。词语转型为笔墨、影像,而每一点、每条线、每一像素中蕴含的经典性,已如另一诗律,加入我们的艺术自律。一个姿态,与文化对决;而一种目标,却始终在创建文化。铆定的方向是:空话免谈,自我的深度必须印证于作品的深度。芒克的油画率性浓烈、晓渡的书札原生元气、严力的笔触优雅灵慧、友友的彩墨野艳奇崛、李笠的摄影自成玄学、长虹的心景嶙峋灵秀、解危的构图瑰异清冷。这里,万变不离其宗的,是每个艺术家创作中不断滋长的诗意。那原创的艺术属性,横溢的才华气质,永远比庞然大物的“过去”更大。民间性和文化性,铸成当代中国艺术的先天基因,由此幻化出我们种种艺术个性。为什么要否认?中国新视觉艺术,一定是还原了思想本义的新文人画:自觉承续、拓展那个贯穿千载的“雅艺术”精神传统——拒斥以任何方式流于空、俗、糙、贱,无论它们凭籍权力、市场的压力,或假借民众口味的名义。

正因为饱经沧桑,艺术才俊美永存。谁与心灵一并还乡、谁和历史一起成长,谁就是“幸存者”。我们生命的诗意,已将自己缔造成一个当代传统,并汇入了那个涵括一切时空的深邃无垠的传统中。