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life on the plain

2008

Minneapolis, USA.

Like I said before, I'm never a optimistic person. Fear is part of me, and probably the best thing inside me. Henry Moore said, "to be an architect is to is believe in life." But sadly, I don't. I don't quite believe in anything. I almost drowned myself in a world of idealism before, by avoiding the reality. So I simply could never be a good architect. That hurts.

I have a room of my own, it is a cave only belongs to me, where I sit is a small oasis in a desert of
darkness. And eerily quiet. But that is what I like after the hard classes, in which I give willingly and unsparingly of myself with no apparent return. I love this tranquility, this quiet, following the strain of the long hours spent on faking myself. This is my rest, this intentional isolation for a while in the evenings, this little time in my room with my pencils, brushes, camera plus tipsy craziness and honesty - all pretense brushed aside, the dominant one, I suspect, is relief.

Then I decide to quit, to escape the constraints of architecture school program.

0048 æ‹·è´?.jpg "Blue is the color I wanna bring to my room 2008" by me

P1010398.jpg "To the Lighthouse 2008" by me in my room

2010

Duesseldorf, Germany.

There is a voice within me telling me that I should flee away from the American scene, the Chinese scene or whatever life style that I'm familiar with. A long moment I lie puzzling under the sun streaming in a golden flow through the blue curtains in my room. I have made my mind to leave and to start out everything in Europe. That's it.

I like it, this new life in Germany. I have a studio underground, where is my refuge to survive with my art, design and architecture. Not like United States, Germany is a country in which art is more tolerated, fantastic dreams of designing could be fulfilled and exoticism is celebrated. In this sense, I thought I could set free all my imaginations and finally realize all my dreams about art, architecture; I thought I could make an impact on the enigmatic sky of Germany; I thought I could do whatever I want to do. The reality is I failed. I failed to make a different with anyone's life. Nobody appreciates my artistic design and profound dream of architecture. I was turned down by thousands of architecture firms by a simple same reason - "It is impossible to be built". Of course, it is impossible to be built because all you care about is how to save money, all you want to get is profit. Compromise, maybe you can give up your dream and design ugly commercial skyscrapers. But, compromise for me is to kill my soul and live like a corpse ever after. My life will be meaningless without creativity and fantasy.

Finally 2016, in the midst of speculation and frustration, I determined to leave again. I packed everything and emptied my studio, I used to call my studio "my shell". At the same, I packed my dream away again. This is the last time I look around my doomed studio. I was once colorful when I was enthusiastic about future. But now, it is dead, dark and gloomy.

If there is anything I change and adopted with my own persona, that is my studio. That comforts me because after all I influenced something. For me, my studio is not micro then - it became all my memories about Germany and Europe.

germany arch 2.jpg "Der Neue Zollhof, Duesseldorf" by braesikalla on flickr

n67900022_30301909_8723.jpg "My studio in Duesseldorf, Germany 2010"

empty studio.jpg "My studio in Duesseldorf, Germany 2016"

2021

Osaka, Japan.

Jade is my name now, believe or not. I have spent years on planting seeds of grasses in Osaka, green and peaceful grasses. Years later, these seeds came out and grow into a green ocean, waving, roaring and flowing. My body is almost receded in this green ocean. Like Claude Debussy's impressionist piano music, lonely and pure. I really enjoy standing in the midst of the grass, listening to the wind plus Debussy, feeling the nature. Many years later, when people walk through the grass, they see a jade statue and that is me.

But why Osaka? Why nature?

Listen, after years of drifting all around the world, I still could not find a place where I belong and I could make an influence. I accidentally stopped in Osaka, Japan, a deserted city. My imagination was brought back to life when I saw the decaying desert and heard the roaring wind. So, my passion to create came in bad nature and white books. Not picture nature in a dozen bird names, but road kills, white pine in eagle nests, fleas in rabbit ears, the last green flies in late autumn, and moths that whisper, whisper at the mirror. That's the truth of nature, brutal truth. Nature voices, crows in the poplars, not plastic bird mobiles over a baby crib. So, nature becomes my big book, imagination is still my teacher.

Then I planted the entire grassland and I built a tower. A steel-made tower in pure nature? You'd better take that as my satirical, almost biased hatred towards urbanism.

Listen, there are words almost everywhere. I realize that in a chance moment. Words are in the air, in the green ocean, in my blood. Words are in snow, trees, leaves, wind, birds, beavers, the sound of ice cracking; words are in fish and mongrels, where they've been since we came to this place with the animals. My breathe is a word, we are words, real words.

For the first time of my life, I feel free. I feel my soul is pure. I feel I could talk to the nature. I feel I am truly released and relieved.

grass.jpg "I planted the grassland in Osaka 2021"

tower.jpg "My tower 2023"

2046

Hong Kong, China

I die in the year of 2046. I'm glad that I'm able to come back to my hometown. Nobody knows me and I'm nobody to everyone. I always believe that I was an artist, architect, naturalist and dreamer.

2046 3.jpg "2046"