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Bosco Sodi 博斯克•索迪

A Thousand Li of Rivers and Mountains / Axel Vervoordt Gallery / Hong Kong / Feb 13 – Sep 5, 2020 / Christine Chan Chiu /

The colour turquoise holds great significance for Bosco Sodi, so much so that the artist’s first solo show at Axel Vervoordt Gallery Hong Kong was devoted to exploring the nuances and subtleties of this pigment.
Created during his two-week residency in Hong Kong last December, the works in it are made with sawdust and inspired by the artist’s experiences in the city. Completing the multi-dimensional exhibition was a selection of the artist’s large clay sculptures, presented on the floor.

The title of the exhibition references the famous 12-metre-long shanshui landscape painting of turquoise-tipped peaks by Chinese painter Wang Ximeng (1113 AD). Focusing on the colour turquoise was cathartic for the artist; not only has the mineral turquoise long been seen as a good-luck talisman in many cultures, but its unique, stunning colour also recalls precious memories from the artist’s childhood. It conjures images of cool waters amid lush landscapes, scenery found both in Sodi’s home city of Oaxaca, Mexico, and in Hong Kong.

While Wang’s mountains are two-dimensional and only form part of the landscape, Sodi’s tactile creations are three-dimensional and are the landscape – seemingly tangible interpretations complete with undulations and protrusions. 

Made with dyed, locally sourced sawdust mixed with white glue, so unusual is their grainy, sponge-like texture that it calls to mind forgotten moss-covered forests or hidden, encrusted deep-sea corals. They are applied to the canvas in a variety of ways: thrown, manoeuvred with sticks and spread with the palms.

All of the artist’s works are process-driven, reminiscent of the action works of the abstract expressionists as well as Japan’s gutai artists, who believed in performative immediacy. They reflect the artist’s philosophy of “embracing the accident”; each painting has to follow its own path. Because Sodi’s ideas never come predetermined, the paintings’ journeys of creation connect the artist and the painting on a spiritual level, conveying emotions that are raw, spontaneous and full of energy.

Complementing the turquoise creations were six earthenware sculptures, a cuboid and five spheres. They are minimalistic, organic works made of clay that the artist harvested from a hillside, then mixed, sculpted and fired at his home in Mexico. Made of earth, water and fire, they were naturally cracked during the firing process with uneven patches and occasional fissures. Presented on the gallery floor, they prompt the viewer to meander around while looking at the paintings.

Just as Chinese shanshui paintings encourage viewers to delve into the landscape, Sodi’s exhibition could be interpreted as a physical metaphorical re-enactment of this journey. Despite the allusion to nature’s grandeur, these are intrinsically works that pay homage to the colour turquoise in all its brilliance and its associations, simultaneously showcasing the artist’s skilful manipulation and tireless exploration of elemental textures. The presentation was a visual feast that celebrated the serendipitous encounters between emotion, energy and time.


綠松藍對博斯克·索迪來說具有重大意義。他在香港維伍德畫廊舉辦首個個展,主力探索這種顏料的細微變異和微妙之處。上年12月,他於香港駐留兩周,創作的作品以木屑製成,靈感來自藝術家在香港的經歷。多維展覽的壓軸是藝術家的大型粘土坐地雕塑作品系列。

展覽的名稱,來自中國畫家王希孟(西元1113年)名作12米長的山水畫作,畫中可見綠松藍色的山巒迭起。聚焦於綠松藍色,為藝術家帶來宣洩;許多文化一直都視礦物綠松石為幸運護身符,而其獨特、迷人色彩也讓藝術家想起童年時的珍貴回憶。它讓人聯想到鬱鬱蔥蔥的風景中清涼的水,這些都是索迪的家鄉墨西哥瓦哈卡和香港可見的畫面。

王希孟畫中的山是平面的,而且只是風景的一部份,但索迪的山有觸感,而且立體,本身是風景的全部,看似是以富起伏和突起的有形詮釋。作品以染色、本地採購的木屑與白色膠水混合而成,它們顆粒狀的海綿質地是奇異之處,讓人想起常被忽視、佈滿苔蘚的森林或隱藏、鑲嵌的深海珊瑚。藝術家以各種方式創作:投擲、用棍子操弄和用手掌塗抹。

藝術家所有作品都是過程主導的,恍若抽象表現主義者和日本「具體派」藝術家的動作作品,他們都傾向表演化的即時性。它們反映了藝術家「擁抱意外」的哲學;每幅畫都要走自己的路。因為索迪的思想從未預先設定,所以繪畫的創作之旅將藝術家和繪畫在精神層面上聯繫起來,傳達原始、自發和充滿能量的情感。

與綠松藍的創作相得益彰的作品有六件陶器雕塑、一個立體雕塑和五個球體。它們是藝術家從山坡上採集的粘土製成的簡約、有機的作品,然後在其墨西哥的家中混合、雕刻和燒製。作品由土、水和火製成,它們在燃燒過程中自然破裂,有不均勻的斑塊,偶爾出現裂縫。作品放於畫廊的地板,他們提示觀眾在看畫時可四處閒逛。

中國山水畫讓觀眾如親臨其境,我們也可以將索迪的展覽視為這種體驗的物理隱喻再現。這些作品與自然的雄偉有關,但本質上是向綠松藍的所有輝煌和聯想致敬,同時展示藝術家嫻熟的操作和對元素紋理孜孜不倦的探索。這次展覽是一次視覺盛宴,推崇情感、能量和時間之間的偶然相遇。

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