Mr Yin and Mr Yang 阴先生与阳先生

Scotland_edited_edited.jpg

2020

38cms (W) x 28cm (H)

Oil on Panel

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This is another in my series of pictures about representing the life that you see in the day to day exploration of Shanghai. A slice of utter normality, but hopefully dressed up in a way to feel slightly worthy of artistic attention.


This very closely resembles a common sight, people playing games together. Previously i've painted a group of guys playing poker. The subject of this is 'Go', the oldest continuously played board game in the world  and which is notorious for being one of the most complex games in the world. In fact, I have read that there are more potential combinations of moves in a game of 'Go' than there are atoms in the known universe. I don't know how to play it myself, but I am aware the basic rules are around piece and territory capture. You need to strategically place pieces in order to control the most of the board at the point at which you give up.


The concept of the game (and this mindboggling notion that it has an infinite quality to it) and the black and white pieces draw parallel to another aspect of Chinese culture that people will perhaps be more familiar with, which is Yin and Yang. This is the idea of dualism, or that opposite forces may be interconnected and in some kind of balance/harmony. Many components of Chinese culture emphasize balance, and  acknowledge that many things may have some form of indivisible connection. The symbol of Yinyang is the inverted black and white tear drop shapes that form a circle.


Mr Yin and Mr Yang form this shape if you imagine yourself where the light is in the picture, looking down, and see the light coated guy and the dark coated guy forming a kind of rotational circle around the board. Like some kind of eternal struggle but in perfect balance.


As I did with the card players, I took a bit of a risk with the perspective here by obscuring the main narrative focus of the picture, the game. The idea is to force you to look at other things, and to distract you from thinking about the game. If you saw this, you'd never stay long enough watching to know who would win. It could go on forever and it's largely within the world of these two guys who are playing right in the middle of a world that we increasingly see as being volatile and fast paced. I enjoyed that contrast of just briefly happening upon an age-old game through a window, and then hurrying along again to do the next thing I need to do in my life.

这是我的系列画中的另一幅,系列画都是关于日常探索上海看到的生活。十分平常,但希望稍微修饰一下,使其略有艺术关注价值。

这是一个日常的景象,人们一起玩游戏。以前我画过一群人玩扑克。这个游戏的主题是“围棋”,世界上最古老的持续多年的棋盘游戏;因是世界上最复杂的游戏之一而出名。事实上,我之前在书上看到,“围棋”游戏的可能步数比已知宇宙中的原子还要多。我也不会下围棋,但我知道基本的规则是关于棋子和领土的占领。你需要战略性地放置棋子,以便在你放弃的时候占领棋盘的大部分。

这个游戏的概念(以及这个令人难以置信的概念,它有一个无限的质量)和黑白棋子类似于中国文化的另一个方面,人们可能会更熟悉,那就是阴阳。这是二元论的观点,或者说相反的力量可能是相互联系的,在某种平衡/和谐中。中国文化的许多组成部分强调平衡,认为许多事物可能有某种不可分割的联系。阴阳的标志是倒转的黑白泪滴形状,形成一个圆圈。

如果您想象自己在图片中的位置,向下看,就会看到阴先生和阳先生形成这种形状,并且看到亮涂层的和暗涂层在板上形成了一种旋转的圆圈。就像某种永恒的斗争,但处于完美的平衡中。

就像我画纸牌玩家一样,在视角方面做了一些冒险,挡住了图片的主要叙事重点(游戏)。这样会让引起你对其他事情的关注,并分散对游戏的思考。如果您注意到了这一点,就不会花很长的时间去想谁会赢。可能永远没有输赢,这很大程度上是他们下棋的世界恰恰处在我们逐渐发现的多变而又节奏快的世界。我喜欢这种对比:通过窗口短暂瞥一眼老游戏上,然后又匆匆忙忙去做其他事。