Saturday, May 21, 2011

Hares and hairs

Today our landlord, Jia, took us out to his house in the country. It's part of a cluster of austere, pre-stressed concrete villas each with their own central courtyards, designed by the artist Shao Fan who lives next door to Jia and who joined us for lunch. Fan comes from a family of artists who way back were also Manchu royalty. He paints and makes sculptures and furniture, all meticulously crafted. He's also incredibly modest about his work and has a delightful wife, Anna, and two children who played with ours. 

I particularly liked his paintings of hares, huge things with penetrating stares; and enlarged wooden sculptures of hairs, each made up of several intricately fashioned pieces, seamlessly joined together. Split hairs?    

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