Chinese X Jewish cultures

Ecclesiastes 5

Ecclesiastes Chapter 5 “Fulfil your Vow to God”. A calligraphy work I made in 2017 with bits of report from the Time magazine. Today, in 2021, these faces are buried under a thick layer of gilding and gold leaf. Silence is golden.

Media: Ink, beechwood block, paper magazine, gold leaf

Calligraphy: The characters on the wooden block are the whole chapter 5 of Ecclesiastes in Hebrew, rendered in Chinese Kaishu calligraphy, an art practice to express my dual identity for being Chinese and Jewish.

Intent: Chinese or Jewish?  That’s the question. During my twentyish years practicing both traditions, I have been regarded as a familiar stranger because I live, define and interpret a culture that the majority of the local community is not known of.  Those challenges of cultural standardisation and massification have urged me to apply the media and metaphors of both cultures to create a site for negotiation between multiplicity and static masses, a space to share the experience of individuals in diaspora.  With my dynamic art forms, I invite the audience to navigate different planetary of contents and produce links between signs faraway from each other, so as to experience my (our) mental nomadism and hybridity stemming from drastic environmental changes in a meditative, adventurous and humorous approach.

© Carol Man 文頴恩 2014 – 2022