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Much of my work is drawn from life, where ordinary things are inexplicably transformed into clear paintings. That is how Fish in Water came to be. I have a crystal ashtray that is in a rounded-square shape and a blooming lotus flower carved into the bottom. When the ashtray is filled with water, the flower’s image is reflected on all of the surfaces. I was raising a small golden fish in there, and when I had spare time, I would watch the fish swim around among the flowers, bringing the spark of intelligence to this rational, orderly piece of crystal. Sometimes I felt pity for the fish. Its home used to be the broad expanse of rivers and lakes, and now he’s crammed into here, even though the walls are quite exquisite.




Time&Space
by Chen qi
Water Print
20 Editions
80×80cm
1999



Goldfish in the Water No.1
by Chen qi
Water Print
135×135cm
1999



Goldfish in the Water No.2
by Chen qi
Water Print
20 Editions
80×80cm
1999

Existence
by Chen qi
Water Print
20 Editions
73×83cm
1999


I’m quite sensitive to simple, ordinary materials. I find truth within details, infinity within limits, and movement within stillness. When you focus on a space for a long time, you will discover things that you couldn’t see before. I think that you can gaze off into the vastness of the sky, and discover worlds in a grain of sand. That is the case with this space solidified by the crystal; it has been magnified and interpreted from different angles in the work. In one of the works, it is like the Yin-Yang diagram in Taoism.