camphor wood sculpture
Lin Manqiu, Ju Ming Museum, Taipei, 2003, pp.72-73.
Zhu Qi, Ju Ming, Taichi Sculpture, Guangxi, 2006, p.24.
Zhu Ming first gained overseas exposure through a major exhibition of wood carvings at the Max Hutchinson Gallery in New York in 1981. This exhibition won unreserved critical praise and recognition and marked the beginning of the Zhu Ming's career as an artist of international stature. The works exhibited were a group of ten remarkable works of sculpture shaped from wood, each approximately 170cm in height, named the Taichi for the Living World. These original sculptures were the artist's earliest on this theme, and would serve as a foundation for his continuing work in the Taichi and Living World series. Worth noting is the importance and the crucial nature of these works, which lay in their being the first in which Zhu Ming combined representational human figures with the formlessness of the martial art of Taichi, thereby embodying in the creation of these innovative and vital works the concept of "formlessness generated out of form, Yin and Yang in balance". In form these pieces all retain individual features, varying in pose and expression, the poised and implied movement of each producing a tremendous sense of explosive power. This sense is heightened when the pieces are placed together, complimenting each other in their perceived interaction. The series as a whole thus transcends the effect of any individual piece in it and aims at an holistic expression of feeling. Its creation marked the first time that Zhu Ming broke through the barriers guarding the worlds of the Taichi and Living World series of works, and into the realm of surpassing peace of eastern philosophy. During their exhibition in 1981, the works were purchased by European and American collectors, and the two works here likewise derive from the private collection of a long time admirer of Zhu Ming's work.
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