Behind the Scenes: Installation of Tian Xiang

Gu Wenda Plaque


Gu Wenda  谷文达,  (b. 1955, China/ USA)

Tian Xiang 天象 , 2015, Stone and Ink

Total of 24 stones, various sizes 150 – 330cm, weight ranges from 500KG – 8000KG.

Part of ENVISION: Sculptures @ the Garden City, exhibition is ongoing till 15 April 2016.

“Tian Xiang 天象” is part of an important series of work (Forest of Stones Steles – Story of Solar Calendar) that took the artist over 20 years to realise. This work is an installation of 24 ‘ru’ rocks in different shapes and sizes. These huge pieces of natural rocks come from the bottom of the sea; billions of year old lime-stones corroded by the sea water and mounted by fossilized aquatic specimens. The rocks are named ‘ru’ as a reference to the Shandong province which is known as the birthplace of Confucianism. Each rock is inscribed on top and all around with a simplified stroke of a Chinese calligraphic character that references Chinese solar terms. Inspired by philosophical theories and stories of our celestial universe, Gu Wenda sets out to bring man and nature closer together. Creating a ‘rock forest’ with this dynamic installation of 24 large rocks, one has the opportunity to experience, immerse and get up close to these significant relics and artefacts, a product of nature’s powerful forces. Gu started thinking and planning this project sometime in 1993, with the idea to create 50 stone steles. It has taken him more than 20 years for the project to come to fruition.


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