2016

Wang Ju Yan
Xian Guan《现观》


From Dunhuang to Suoyang, from Kizil to Bezeklik, Xian Guan was a journey made between four Buddhist cave painting sites on the ancient Chinese Silk Road. It is through the wildness in the North West that the sublime register of history can be felt. Art, in a way, is the presentation of history as a material to the present. Within these immense natural sceneries, Wang Ju Yan observed the geo-political uncertainties caused by racial, historical and economic pressures. From the Buddhist site in Dunhuang (partly demolished during the Culture Revolution) to the current conflict areas near Kizil, history confronts the contemporary in Xian Guan. Reinterpreting the nightmarish vision and tormented ambience of Goya’s Átropos / Las Parcas and La romería de San Isidro, the texture and tonalities of this series constructs the landscape and its narrative into an object of aesthetics.

*Xian Guan 《现观》 (the abbreviation of Abhisamaya-alaṅkāra in Chinese) is one of five Sanskrit-language Mahāyāna Buddhist scriptures. Xian Guan also means in contemporary Chinese “now, observe”.

About the Artist
Born in Beijing, Wang Ju Yan (b. 1993, China) is an image artist currently based in London. Wang earned his BA in London College of Communication and has exhibited widely between China and UK. The historical sublime of Wang’s work heightens the ambiguities in his large-scale landscape using a unique visual language.