Mirror and Chair Man
— oil on canvas, 130 x 60 cm, 2009
— pencil on paper, 76 x 52 cm, 2005
by Du Kun (Mizuma & One Gallery)
Here, these two works are related ideas, but not necessarily a contiguous pairing.
“Chair Man,” the drawing, was executed in 2005, whereas “Mirror” not until four years later in 2009. “Chair Man,” is obviously a study work with several other chair and table forms scattered throughout the background, it is possible that this is even a sampling of a larger sketch work given the cropping. What is similar between the two pieces is the posture of the individual along with the dehumanization of the head, represented in both pieces by a latticework of some kind, possibly alluding to jade carving.
The overall progression of Du Kun’s work is evident in “Mirror” when we consider, in particular, the reflection. At first glance, the chair person is unusual to behold, unusual enough to hold our focus, delaying (or perhaps preventing) us from seeing the rather significant differences seen in the reflection on the floor. This figure is not a direct reflection of reality, but rather a dynamic reflection of potentiality or emotionality. The figure is seen with hands clasped above its torso possibly praying to be free of this sessile existence or perhaps yearning to delve deeper, diving into the world beyond the mirror.