Sunday, 7 April 2013

complicated thoughts: Hu Ming

Hu Ming, Rain at Sunset, 1996

Hu Ming, Shower II, 2008

"I looked after the library and it was there that I found a room with banned books. I spent my spare time picking up one book after another from the floor, filing them, repairing them, making covers for them, shelving them and sealing them. Every Sunday I would bring a piece of steamed bread, some pickled vegetables and a kettle of water with me and hide myself in the small building to read the books, and it would last the whole day. During that period, I read a large number of famous works, Chinese or foreign. When it got dark I would take some back by stealth and read them inside my quilt.
On one occasion I found a little pamphlet featuring human bodies portrayed by Michelangelo in Japanese. I was literally shocked by the strong bodies and their muscles. I looked at them repeatedly and copied them. When someone from the Political Division found this he confiscated it. I can still remember Director Song gravely criticized me, saying, "You have very complicated thoughts for a young girl and you do not strive for progress." The bodies painted by Michelangelo have since become fixed in my mind; this book would change my life. Michelangelo’s drawings and I would spend many Sundays in the locked library – marvelling at the sketches of the human body and then the copying of the drawings, all of which was banned during the Cultural Revolution."

"Her paintings express dearly her worship of the female form 
depicting both physical strength and feminine beauty. Her works 
are not of a planned process born of her dreams and represents 
an accumulation of her diverse experiences."

Reuters video

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