Detail expands


The story begins:


On a summer day back in some year, I was sitting at my work desk, staring out of the large window that took up two-thirds of the wall. The weather was overcast that day. The wind was blowing the curtains up, and there is a wide-open space between the window screen and the curtain. All of a sudden, the curtains were sucked tightly against the window screen, as if pulled by a vacuum. The lifting and pull-back of the curtains proceeded in a continuous cycle. Through the gap that appeared each time the curtains were lifted, a still and expressionless patch of pale gray sky, of uncertain distance, was revealed outside the window through the dust-covered warp and woof, which caused the agitation in the curtains to appear solemn and tragic for some unfathomable reason.


The Argentinian author Alberto Manguel (1948~ ) wrote this portrayal in his article "Ordinary Painting Viewer: Images Telling Stories": There was a man who watched the sun go down every day, and he knew that this was the endlessly repeated end of a god whose name was a taboo for his clan. One day, this man lifted his head and looked, and suddenly saw with true clarity the sun sink into a lake of fire. His response was to dip his hand in red clay, and press has palm against the wall of his cave. After a period of time, some other man saw the palm print, and felt afraid, or moved, or maybe just curious, and he later told a story about it. This story did not mention that there existed somewhere the first setting sun ever seen and that god who died before nightfall." After this story had been told repeatedly, some details were exaggerated, enlarged, or passed over, and all the things and matters in the story were transformed into truths, and their original forms have since been lost somewhere between reality and illusion.


In a building, curtains and window screens are walls full of pores. Do these walls full of pores have boundaries, or no boundaries? Are they sealed or open? In his "Almost All Narration," Maurice Blanchot 1907~2003) states: "A space that is sealed and cannot be entered, but allowing the wind to blow through…. Here, at night, apart from all sleep, echoes the muffled sound of talkers, the coughing sound of the sick, the wheezing sound of those on the brink of death, and the held breath of that person who is ceaselessly ceasing to live. Long, but not expansive, the space is as narrow as a tunnel. Here, distance and closeness – that forgotten closeness and waiting distance – mutual approaching and boundless separation." The wind assumes the role of a teller of everyday matters, which percolate and are exchanged in this warp and woof. This place retains the track of time and human activities. I use it as an excuse, and write the daily cycle of chattering in everyday life. The same as what was seen, because they partially grow and shrink in different ways, they sprawl out and create different scenes, and expand and mutate in the midst of constantly retold details!

Text / WANG Tzu-Yun