Liu Yi, atelier
RESIDENCE | Saint-Gilles

Liu Yi in residence at ODRADEK

From 24/10/2014 to 30/01/2015

In residence at ODRADEK, Liu Yi began by getting hold on the city by traveling for a long time on a bicycle, carefully archiving the images that caught his attention and commenting on them almost simultaneously in tweets. Immediate traces of a place and a moment in time, those are also, like his works, signs left to themselves in the ubiquity of the network.

Danielle Rousseau and Liu Yi

ODRADEK proposes an intercultural dialogue between two graphic devices, that of Danielle Rousseau and that of Liu Yi. After a 3-month residency followed by a solo exhibition in January 2015 at ODRADEK, Liu Yi now makes his contribution to Danielle Rousseau’s exhibition. Both agree to participate in the project of a China / Belgium mutual exchange experience. Building on their common concerns, which are the practice of line art and the use of ink, the two artists question the aesthetic criteria of their respective cultures by taking an interest in the paradigm of the other.

With Liu Yi and Danielle Rousseau, figures with readable and decipherable content disappear to make way for another language organization: that of dynamic tensions, transformations between ink prepared by man and water provided by nature. Through this fundamental interaction, it becomes possible for them to try new brushstrokes, playing with the values of the past and those from elsewhere. The traits produced by this alliance allow the spectator to dilute or soften their own firmest criteria and stereotypes about the aesthetics of the other.

Liu Yi, breaking free from the academic constraints of classical calligraphy, reduced the characters to abstract signs, thus giving them a “freedom”, an existence with a Western impulse. Danielle Rousseau, learning about the technique and art of the Far Eastern stroke, seeks to suggest her point of view rather than impose it on us. Through her gaze and her Western cultural background, she perceives what we lack and is embraces it: the dynamics of emptiness and the intimate relation to the cosmic movement.