Ah Xian

Part of my rekindled affair with ceramics, is finding new stuff.
I came across the great, life cast figures by Chinese artist Ah Xian from the Fabrik Project.
Born in 1960 in Beijing and currently living in Sidney, Ah makes these pieces out of a variety of traditional Chinese materials. Porcelain, Enamel and Lacquer, to name a few.
I hate to postulate on meaning, as a) It is part of my job to have an opinion, and even I get tired of hearing myself go off. b) I think it is best to let each viewer come to their own place when viewing work. But if you have studied your materials and you have studies you ceramics history and current events. I think that you can take these somewhere.
It does make me think about something that I have been postulating on though. Living in an Art School environment and looking at decoration, I have been puzzled by a developing trend. That is the tattooed face. I am a regular reader of Modblog . (WARNING! Do not click if easily offended) and the growing trend seen there of tattooing the face.
Now I have no tattoos, but I have long been around them and living in an Art School there is nothing left to shock me. But the face seems particularity bizarre. It is the literal reflection of you to the world. And the desire to distort that seems funny to me. I know that many will argue that it is similar to plastic surgery, or the like. But it seems that it Plastic surgery is inherently meant to hide things, where as this is meant to bring them out.
This all brings me back to ceramics. When I was an undergrad, the question was posed to me, I forget by whom, that "When is decoration on the surface, and when is it integrated into the work?" I ask the same question to you my dear readers.

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