Interview: Yang Sirui
Luca Curci talks with Yang Sirui during CONTEMPORARY VENICE 2021, at THE ROOM Contemporary Art Space.
Yang Sirui is constantly exploring and practising to find new ways of expression and art media that suit her in fine arts such as drawing and painting on canvas, digital illustration, photography, video, jewellery design and production. In terms of creation, she believes that innocence and profoundness form a complementary relationship. Meanwhile, she seeks to open a certain in-depth discussion on exploring human, cultural diversity, current social situations, and their interaction with nature. Sociology (sociological theory, etc.) psychology (analytical psychology, cognitive psychology, social psychology, etc.), philosophy, etc. are the fields she explored in recent years. Yang Sirui (b.2000) is currently studying and living in Nanjing, China and Melbourne, Australia. In 2019, Sirui began her professional study and practice in the fine arts at RMIT in Melbourne, Australia.
LC – Which subject are you working on?
YS – I was working on visual arts when I was creating this series. I am currently exploring contemporary art, also enriching myself by learning knowledge in other fields.
LC – How did you get to your current artistic practice?
YS – I suppose that the weather conditions of those days and the living conditions we were facing together inspired me to express my realizations by creating these illustrations. The works coincided with the hottest month in Australia and coincided with the lockdown period. It is such a sudden that I was given an immense amount of time on getting along with myself, therefore, which was also becoming ever more central to my life. During the lockdown, I was feeling afraid, helpless, frustrated, bored, or even angry. Particularly almost every day when I opened my eyes and got up to face the same living environment that I had seen countless times. I suppose these emotions could be felt in my works. Ever since no rainy days for more than two weeks I have been living days as if they were years. One day I suddenly heard a roaring of thunder, turned back to see what happens out of the window, the black clouds resemble the spilt ink half blotting upon the sky, then it was raining for a long time until my heart once again filled. In the distance, I saw one cloud that looked like the brave troop beast or Chimera in a western culture so much and around with some small clouds were like some small beings or beasts. They were together flying through the black clouds and the lightning when I was taking this memorable moment. I felt so excited and grateful that a heavy rain made the original rusty heart become extremely clear, “I’ll paint it, right now!”. I am so grateful that I still keep the sense of nature, then enable finally release them from my mind to my hands, also share them with others. Since childhood, I have been keen on looking up to the sky, especially when observing the changing shapes of clouds under the wind blowing and sunlight. In those moments, the clouds would become some strange creatures who play in my head, sometimes I was wondering if they are all real existing, which brings a peculiar feeling.
LC – Do visitors’ suggestions enrich yourself and your art?
YS – To some extent, I am intrigued by people’s reactions. Whether the comments are positive or negative, as long as my works are “getting in touch” with them at a moment. It is important to explore the outside world around me in my way and my direction. In the process, the audiences’ perspectives may open up a new route to me. Hoping to make communications with those who have different life experiences and cultural backgrounds with me.
LC – Do you use art to express something in particular? Is it your medium of expression?
YS – Currently, art is an approach to observing and exploring the world around me. It can be not only one or more projection(s) of one particular object on me, but also a unique inner connection of various objects on me. Because I’m still on the way and continuing to discover and explore these connections with the outside world, I suppose this might be one of the expressions I’d like to present at this stage.
LC – How do you feel when you see your work completed?
YS – Happiness, self-satisfaction, healing, childlike innocence, the theme is still here. Of course, this is just the beginning of an exploration and I look forward to the journey ahead.
LC – In which way the artwork presented in our exhibition is connected with the festival’s theme?
YS – It is my pleasure to be part of this exhibition. The festival focuses on the themes of identity and the relationship between people, society and contemporary cities. I consider my creations and this exhibition are mainly connected on two levels. Firstly, these illustrations are reflecting my living state and attitude towards life at that time. I express my joys and sorrows, my memories, the present and the future through the combination of reality and imagination. Secondly, as an independent individual in the developing progress of this contemporary society, it is fast-pacing and full of uncertainty, how should we face the unknown fear and insecurity? When we feel the most difficult, we can still have the courage to face our life. In this Lunar New Year, I hope everyone can still be full of vigour and vitality in life. You can also be loving and full of passion while busy, looking for the life pace that suits you. No matter who you are or where you are, may we learn and discover new things about ourselves in the face of adversity, be happy in the good times, and live in the now. Whether the weather is good or bad today, please remember to cherish yourself and store energy.
LC – Can you explain something about the artworks you have in our exhibition?
YS – They are hiding in question 2 and question 6. I actually would like to leave more room for the discussion and hope my audiences can discover things new in their life.
LC – Would you suggest a collaboration with us? What do you think about our services?
YS – I think it is like making friends: it takes time. My friendly suggestion would be that your mailing service can be more convenient and efficient for applications from overseas artists. Besides, the exhibition fee is actually quite expensive for ordinary art practitioners, so I hope you can adjust it as appropriate.
LC – Do you think ITSLIQUID GROUP can represent an opportunity for artists?
YS – I consider that you really provide a platform for promoting communications among artists, art practitioners or people who like art. Hope to be better and perfect.
LC – Did you enjoy cooperating with us?
YS – I’m glad to receive your invitation.