ARCH REVIEW | Guo Yujian ：Dangerous Complicitiy
Artist: Guo Yujian
Not a complete plot is wrapped in random single images, they carry a moment. When looking at Guo Yujian’s works, what have been depicted is always in a state of flow, and the secret words that are related to each other become images that avoid us and approach us. The work that takes shape on the canvas in our sight is yet to come, in transition, about to embrace change, and it will not push us away until the feeling is fulfil.
“What a painting gives vision is a reality that not an eye can be satisfy” (Benjamin, 1992). Guo Yujian does not rely on a certain way to construct a series of images, and the feelings that come to us are not tied to a certain storyline. On the one hand, the artist seldom gives specific descriptions of the scenes he depicts, and the paintings he presented are not accompanied by information; more importantly, the scenes and memories that pre-exist in other images, texts, and memories, they flow and dissipation in his works. We do not need to watch in a step-by-step sequence or reading order, but use our own consciousness to find our place in the work. “The past is dialectical in the advance of the future, and out of this dialectic and conflict emerges an unfolding, time-displaced present” (Didi-Huberman, 1992). We don’t even have to relate it to our own reality, but let it disrupt, push the visible in front of us, or tamper with it, waiting to be part of the story in farther places yet to come.
Looking in the process of painting is not a mechanical act that only grabs the real objects, and giving visible objects is not providing some visual facts. In the game with experience, skills, and mechanisation, the artist’s choices — based on his motif, history, knowledge and ego. Colours are not just condensed on a surface, they are diffused around the object, “There is, then, a depth which does not yet operate between objects, which, a fortiori, does not yet assess the distance between them, and which is simply the opening of perception upon some ghost thing as yet scarcely qualified. ” (Merleau-Ponty, 1962)
If you get as close to the paintings as possible, allow yourself to be absorbed in these consciousnesses, or even say, when you allow yourself to penetrate deeply enough into the material in front of you — this requires a long gaze — to sink, float, and dissolve in the painting. Moving with the lines. Even if you enter an unfathomable and mysterious place, certain shared feelings will flourish and inhabit by your side. Feelings that have escaped, been excluded, or forgotten will come back in another form, the gaping of the inner world will contain the truth.