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“霓虹”刘利斌个展

  • 展览海报
  • 《环环相扣20130001》 刘利斌 100x180cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·15》 刘利斌
  • 《霓虹·16》 刘利斌
  • 《霓虹·18》 刘利斌
  • 《霓虹·23》 刘利斌
  • 《霓虹·20180001》 刘利斌 80x100cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180002》 刘利斌 50x60cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180003》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180004》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180005》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180006》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180007》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180008》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180009》 刘利斌 89x130cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180010》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180011》 刘利斌 50x60cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180012》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180013》 刘利斌 67x88cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180014》 刘利斌 120x200cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20180015》 刘利斌 120x200cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190001》 刘利斌 120x150cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190002》 刘利斌 100x180cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190003》 刘利斌 120x150cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190004》 刘利斌 120x150cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190005》 刘利斌 100x120cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190006》 刘利斌 120x150cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190007》 刘利斌 100x120cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190008》 刘利斌 74x114cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190009》 刘利斌 74x114cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190011》 刘利斌 130x160cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190012》 刘利斌 130x160cm 布面丙烯
  • 《霓虹·20190013》 刘利斌 130x160cm 布面丙烯
展览时间:
2019-09-29 - 2019-10-27
开幕时间:
2019-09-29 16:00
展览城市:
四川 - 成都
展览机构:
蓝顶顶空间
展览地址:
成都市天府新区 新兴镇蓝顶2期顶空间
策 展 人:
简丽庭
主办单位:
成都蓝顶美术馆
承办单位:
蓝顶·顶空间
参展人员:
刘利斌

展览介绍

绘画的理由

The Reason of Painting

文/简丽庭

自1950年代以来,艺术渐渐成为一种超越传统形式分类的跨领域创作课题,这也使绘画再度遭遇挑战。美国艺评家哈罗德.罗森堡(Harold Rosenberg)在1952年的文章〈美国行动画家〉曾评说道:「在某一特定的时期,画布在一个又一个的美国画家眼中已成为一种行动场域──而不是再制、重新设计、分析或『表现』真实或想象的客体。出现在画布上的不再是图画,而是一个事件。」偶发艺术家艾伦.卡普罗(Allan Kaprow)在1958年进一步谈到:「如今年轻艺术家们无需再宣称『我是画家』、『我是诗人』或『我是舞蹈家』。他们都是『艺术家』。」甚至在亚瑟.丹托(Arthur Danto)眼中,艺术问题自安迪.沃霍(Andy Warhol)的〈布里洛箱〉(Brillo Box, 1964)之后便不再是感官问题,而是哲学问题。

这意味着在当代艺术跨领域的、概念化的语境下,曾经作为美术(fine arts)概念下的一支分类的绘画,显然会遭遇许多难题:如何在前人的基础上继续绘画呢?还能怎么画呢?绘画还有新的可能性吗?因此,今日如果要重新强调「画家」身份,那么画家们的首要任务或许就在于,在理论的现况中寻求某种既能说服自己,也能够在艺术专业上有所开展的「绘画的理由」。

在刘利斌的创作中,「绘画的理由」来自于绘画本身尚未穷尽的问题,比如他早期透过一系列「肖像」的描绘来探问绘画的本质,这些画面以一到四人组成,许多作品甚至沿用同一构图。然而刘利斌刻意不描绘画中人的五官,使它失去了传统肖像画识别人物的功能,转而运用色块和规律的笔触使画面趋向纯粹的视觉问题。这样工作方式借鉴了保罗.塞尚(Paul Cézanne)、乔治.莫兰迪(Giorgio Morandi)等艺术家前例,比如塞尚描绘了一系列的圣维克多山(Mont Sainte-Victoire),莫兰迪则大量描绘以瓶罐为主的静物,他们真正的关注的并非风景、静物等架上绘画的传统门类(genres),而在于透过某些具体的形象来承载绘画语言,绘画才是其真正的研究对象。

在刘利斌后续的创作中,他进一步减少私人情感在绘画中的投射,转而强调绘画材料的物理特性与绘画工具自身的性质与限制,包括在宣纸上以规律的笔触描绘大量并列的线段,开启了抽象语汇的实验。此后,他对于绘画平面性的探索结合了特定的符号,比如在〈私人财产〉系列作品中,画面往往布满短促且同方向的并排笔触,笔触间填充着一个金黄色的形体,这个形体往往呈现出团块或植物般的造型。艺术家自称这些造型的来源,来自于中文语境中的「金山银山」、「金枝玉叶」等山、石、植物的形象。

尽管如此,就像他早期描绘的「肖像」最终无法反应出任何一个画中人的面容,中文语言上的意义可能只是刘利斌绘画造型的一种寄托。正如他之后展开的〈环环相扣〉系列作品,画面中最醒目的是两个单色的、相交的环形色块。「环环相扣」这个名称,与其说是中文意义上的符号联想,不如说是对于作品造型的描述。此一逐步向绘画本质逼近的过程,使刘利斌的创作继水墨的线条尝试后再度舍弃了形体,转而以绘画的媒材和工具作为研究路径。比如在〈关于绘画的绘画〉系列作品中,往往呈现出平均的、没有构图的、没有三维空间暗示的色域,甚至采取特定的笔刷方向,在画布边缘自然形成颜料的堆积。

在近期〈霓虹〉系列作品中,刘利斌对于绘画本身的研究,使他进一步约束自己对绘画的控制,而将主导画面的因素转向绘画工具本身的条件。比如他制作了一个大约光盘尺寸的圆孔模板,每次涂绘都以稀释的丙烯颜料框限在这个模板内。这种工作方式使画面中布满尺寸相等的半透明圆形,它们彼此相互重叠而透露出多层次的色彩。

而后又衍生出以笔刷直接绘制的方式,并同样诉诸明确的绘画工序,比如在每一幅画中只使用同一尺寸的笔刷,涂绘的区域保持与笔刷同宽。并且涂刷的方向虽有弯曲变化,但必然都是从画布的其中一个边缘描绘到对向的边缘,使这些带状色块虽然彼此重叠且有方向性,却直通画布两边而看不见笔画的尽头,这无疑突显画的平面性的效果。

刘利斌刻意为他的绘画过程设定许多条件,固然由此形成了特殊的视觉语汇,但更重要的是这反应出对于绘画思考的观念转折,而指向了若干课题:

1.艺术家自我隐匿的传统

首先,自现代艺术显现出题材彻底解放的现象以来,绘画就面临一连串的困境,一旦绘画无所限制,那么还剩什么好画的呢?艺术家个人的情感与生活经验,足以提供源源不绝的表现的动力吗?

在达达与超现实主义对于绘画的解答(同样也是对于其他艺术门类的解答),是将这个自浪漫主义以来随着现代绘画得到大力发展的艺术家神话,以及艺术家这个被夸大了的创作主体暂时放下,将绘画的可能性保留给艺术家主观意识以外的效果。因此诗导入了随机的因素,音乐创作纳入了噪音,绘画则出现了自动技法(automatism),艺术家似乎藉此自我隐匿,而将他们对于作品的主导权释放出来。

类似的概念也影响了「偶然性」在绘画媒材、绘画技法、乃至绘画过程中的运用,似乎唯有引入「外力」,才能使绘画重获生命力。甚至在1950年代抽象绘画似乎耗尽了创作主体的动能后,必须通过引入既成的图像,从摄影、电影、大众传媒等方式来重新思考绘画。正如刘利斌在探索绘画本质的过程中,总是阶段性地将自身的生活经验抽离,并有意识地隐藏创作者自我表达的欲望,这使得他的作品脱离了表现力等纯粹视觉的课题,从而将绘画视为一个思考的场域。

2.绘画规则的设计及其创造性

其次,绘画并非都是即兴而发地工作。将绘画进行方法上与劳务上的规划与分工,甚至将劳务转交给他人执行,也不是当代艺术的专利,比如十七世纪凭借着绘画与外交才能而周旋于欧洲诸国的鲁本斯(Peter Paul Rubens),便以其工作室细致的分工闻名。

然而当代艺术家对于绘画工作方式的思考并不只是更高效地完成作品,而是当艺术转向观念的过程中,工作方式的改变本身就具有创造性的意义。在刘利斌一连串绘画实践中,逐渐突显出他对于绘画规则的设计,并通过这些规则来引导画面构成。这些绘画规则不仅隐藏了艺术家的主观意志而彰显了绘画自身,同时也具有方法论的科学意义,而能够藉此思考绘画,并反过来发展新的绘画规则。

3.作为态度的绘画

延伸而来的讨论则是,绘画规则意味着绘画课题已从视觉课题转移了出来,它更涉及某种创作的态度(attitude)。正如蒂埃里.德.迪弗(Thierry de Duve)在〈当形式已成态度——及其他〉一文中所指出的,在艺术教育层次上,当代典范有别于「古典」和「现代」的典范,正因为其价值并不是来自于「天赋」(talent)和「创造力」(creativity),而是「态度」。

有时艺术作品看似传统的外观,并不意味着概念上的守旧,正如葛哈.李希特(Gerhard Richter)绘画的核心课题并不在精湛的技艺或创新的风格,而是通过大量实践去形塑某种关于绘画风格和题材的数据库。

对于刘利斌来说,看似抽象的作品也不是对于1950年代抽象凯旋的讴歌,而是藉由工具的外在条件、绘画过程中的规则与限制,自然残存下来的物质成果。艺术家的任务只是不断地实践,以某种自我修养般的方式,回答自己作为画家,以及为何而画的问题。

Neon: Solo Exhibition of Liu Libin

The Reason of Painting
Text: Jian Liting

Since the 1950s, art has gradually become a cross-border topic of creation that surpasses traditional forms and genres, which has once more challenged painting. American art critic Harold Rosenberg commented in his article “ The American Action Painter” in 1952, “At a certain moment, the canvas began to appear to one American painter after another as an arena in which to act-rather than a space in which to reproduce, redesign, or ‘express’ an object…What was to go on the canvas was not a picture but an event. ” Happenings artist Allan Kaprow further discussed it in 1958: “Young artists today need no longer say ‘I’m a painter’ or ‘a poet’ or ‘a dancer’. They are simply ‘artists’. ” Even in the eyes of Arthur Danto, since Andy Warhol’s Brillo Box (1964) , the art issue is no longer a sensory issue, but a philosophical one .

This means in the cross-border and conceptual context of contemporary art, painting, which used to be a branch categorized under the concept of “fine arts”, will obviously encounter many problems. How to continue to paint on the basis of the predecessors? How else to paint? Is there any new possibility for painting? Consequently, if today the identity of “painter” is to be emphasized again, the primary task of the painters might be to search for a reason of painting that can both persuade themselves and to be developed in the field of art.

In Liu Libin’s creation, “the reason of painting” comes from the question of painting that is not yet over. For example, he questioned the essence of painting through a series of “portraits” in his early days. These pictures are composed of one to four people. Many works even use the same composition. Nevertheless, Liu Libin did not depict the facial features of the people, which deprived traditional portrait’s function of distinguishing characters. He used color blocks and regular brushwork to lead the picture towards a pure visional issue. He borrowed this way of work from Paul Cézanne, Giorgio Morandi and other artists. For example, Cézanne painted a series of Mont Sainte-Victoire; Morandi painted a great number of still life of which were mainly bottles and vases. What they truly paid attention to were not traditional genres of easel art, such as landscapes and still life, but carrying the language of painting through certain concrete images; painting was their true object of research.

In the subsequent creation of Liu Libin, he further reduced the projection of personal feelings in the painting, while emphasized the physical characters of the painting materials and the nature and the limitation of the painting tools, which included depicting large amount of juxtaposed line segments on the Xuan paper by use of regular brushwork and initiated an experiment of abstract vocabulary. After that, his exploration of the flatness of painting was combined with specific symbols. For example, in the series Personal Property, the picture is often filled with short and juxtaposed brushwork in the same direction; in-between the brushwork there are golden forms appearing to be blocks or plants. The artist claimed that the origin of those forms come from the images of mountain, rock and plant in the Chinese context “gold and silver mountains” and “gold branches and jade leaves”.

Nonetheless, as his early “portraits” in the end could not reflect any character’s facial features, the meaning in the sense of the Chinese language might have only been a kind of sustenance in Liu Libin’s painting. In his later series Interlocking, the most striking things are two single-colored, loop-shaped interlocking blocks. The name “Interlocking” is rather a depiction of the shape of the work than a symbolic association in the sense of the Chinese language. This gradual approaching process to the essence of painting made Liu Libin once again abandon figurative paintings in his creation after his attempt of applying ink and wash lines and instead research on the media and the tools of painting. For example, the series Painting about Painting show even color gamut without composition or any suggestion of three dimensions. Furthermore, some specific brush directions led to natural color accumulations at the edge of the canvas.

In his recent series Neon, Liu Libin’s research on painting itself enabled him to further restrain his control over it and guide the factors dominating the picture to the conditions of the painting tools. For example, he made a disc-sized template with a circular hole and each painting was limited within this template using dilute acrylic paints. This way of work filled the canvas with equivalent semi-transparent circles; they overlapped each other and showed multi-layered colors.

Then he developed a way to paint with brush directly, which also restored to definite painting procedures. For example, in one painting, he only used brushes of the same size; the painting blocks maintained the same width as that of the brushes. Meanwhile, although there were bending and changing of direction of the brush, they were all from one edge of the canvas going toward the opposite edge. In this way, these banded color blocks overlapped each other and had their own directions, and they connected the two sides of the canvas without seeing the end of the brushwork. This undoubtedly highlights the effect of the flatness of the painting.

Liu Libin set many conditions for his painting process on purpose, thus formed a special visual vocabulary. What’s more important is that this reflects his conceptual turn in the thinking of painting and points to several topics.

The Tradition of the Self-concealment of the Artist
First of all, since modern art revealed the phenomenon of a complete liberation of subject, painting has been facing a series of predicaments. Once there is no limitation in painting, what is there left to paint? Can the personal feelings and living experiences of the artists provide continuous drive for their expressions?

The answer to painting by Dada and Surrealism (as the answer to other genres of art) was to temporarily put aside the artist myth (which, since Romanticism, had been vigorously developed along with modern painting) and the artist (which had been an exaggerated creative subject), and leave the possibility of painting to the effect other than the subjective consciousness of the artist. Therefore, random factors were guided into poetry, noise was incorporated into music and automatism appeared in painting. Artists thus turned to self-concealment and released their domination over the works.

Similar concepts influenced the application of “contingency” in the painting media, techniques and process. It seemed only by introducing “exterior force” could painting regain its vitality. And in the 1950s, after the abstract painting seemed to have consumed all the kinetic energy of the creative subject, given images had to be introduced and painting be reconsidered through photography, film and mass media. In the same way, Liu Libin periodically extracted his own living experiences during the process of exploring the essence of painting and intentionally concealed the desire to express himself as creator. This made his painting break away from the pure visual issue (such as expression) and be considered as a field of thinking.

The Design of the Painting Rules and Its Creativity
Secondly, painting is not entirely impromptu work. Designing and dividing painting according to method and labor and even handing over labor to others are not a patent of contemporary art. For example, in the 17th Century, Peter Paul Rubens, who circled round the countries in Europe thanks to his painting and diplomatic talents, was well-known for the detailed division of labor in his studio.

However, contemporary artists’ thinking of the way of work is not only to complete the work more efficiently; during the process of converting art into conception, the change of the way of work has its own creative meaning. In a series of Liu Libin’s practices, his design of the painting rules was gradually highlighted and the pictures were composed following these rules. These painting rules not only conceal the artist’s subjective will, manifest painting itself and meanwhile possess the scientific meaning of methodology, by use of which he ponders over painting and develop new painting rules conversely.

Painting as Attitude
The extended discussion is: painting rules mean that the topic of painting has moved from the visual topic and it more refers to a certain kind of attitude in creation. Just as Thierry de Duve pointed out in “When Form Has Become Attitude—And Beyond ,” in the respect of the paradigm of art education, contemporary model differs from “classic” and “modern” models, since its value does not come from “talent” or “creativity”, but from “attitude”.

Sometimes the seemingly traditional outlook of the artwork does not mean conceptual conservatism. Just as Gerhard Richter’s core topic of painting does not lie in his superb technique or innovative style, but lies in building some sort of database about the painting style and theme through a great deal of practice.

For Liu Libin, the seemingly abstract work is not an eulogy to the success of abstraction in the 1950s, rather a naturally-remained material achievement benefited from the exterior conditions of the tools and the rules and limitations during the process of painting. The artist’s task is, through a self-improved way, to continuously practice and answer the question of “why paint” as a painter.

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