Deborah Ong ©

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  1. "Artist's Breath"

    (Homage to Piero Manzoni)

    84 x 84cm

    Limited Edition of 5

    Ink on Xuan Paper


  2. 1 ) 83 x 83 cm, Framed, Ink on Xuan Paper 2016

    2) 85 x 110 cm, Framed, Ink on Xuan Paper, 2016

    Choosing to forgo the brush, this work is a record of an artist's pattern of breathing that is said to imbue traditional calligraphy with qi (氣), energy that moves the universe; an ancient chinese legend.

  3. A performance at Mr Chen Wen Hsi posthumous exhibition titled "HOMECOMING". TAC (The Artists Company) blew ink bubbles to celebrate his pioneering spirit. On 10 metres of traditional Xuan paper we huffed and puffed and got others to join in the fun. This is a piece titled 和气 (Combined breath/ Harmony) to celebrate the evening.


    Chinese Ink and Soap


  4. This series of work is both an homage to Piero Manzoni’s ‘Artist’s Breath, 1960’ and to the traditions of pictographic chinese calligraphy from the Shang Dynasty or 象形 (xiàng xíng). Using the concept of qi (氣) or vital force,these paintings seek to literally breathe life into ancient chinese characters, and to temporarily restore the pictorial language that is closer to nature. The child-like, abstract nature of the work further returns this form of language to a state of tabula rasa. As though these characters are removing layers of evolution, political revolutions, and carefully preserved culture to reveal something more primordial.
    The title of work “吹泡泡 (blowing bubbles)” is also a colloquial chinese expression to mean gibberish. Unlike traditional calligraphy governed by rules that ensure its cultural continuity; the playful title takes after Manzoni’s mischievous antics by also reflexively acknowledging the act of conceptualizing improperly and naively written chinese calligraphy.

    “吹泡泡 (blowing bubbles)”

    Chinese Ink on Paper


  5. These works were exhibited as part of 
    LANTING Art Society 30 Years Retrospect Nov 7-10 2019, at the Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre.