3812: What motivated you to create such a diary series?
Wang Huangsheng: During the pandemic I have had a myriad of thoughts and feelings, and pondered on what art could achieve in the face of such a turbulent virus outbreak. I believe the only option is to act and express the emotions of the struggle, fragility, trauma, and to cherish the caring nature of life. As the situation changes every day, I decided to document my constantly changing emotions and thoughts day by day.
3812: You have reapplied the approach of rubbing on paper with gauze and ink. How does it help to express your theme?
Wang Huangsheng: In fact, I have been working on the theme of the fragility of life against social violence and the viruses. I have used barbed wire, glass, gauze, and oxygen cylinders to create works, each of which has shown their relationship with life and themes such as conflicts, struggles, protection, healing and so on. My latest solo exhibition "Wang Huangsheng: Breathe IN / OUT", which was due to open on 16th February at Shanghai Long Museum, has become a prophecy and metaphor when breathing has become a public health crisis. In the face of the virus outbreak at this time, from which I witnessed the impermanence and resilience of humanity, the helplessness and determination of common people, and the resistance and devotion of many righteous and selfless souls, I hope to express the mixed feelings of sorrow, helplessness, confrontation, elapsing, caring and healing through the method of rubbing with ink and gauze.
3812: When did you start creating this series? Will you continue the creation on a daily basis until the epidemic is over?
Wang Huangsheng: The Diary of an Epidemic series started on 2nd February. In fact, I also created another Small Objects for Epidemic Prevention series and made relevant notes of what have happened during the epidemic. Recently, as the epidemic appeared to be under control (in China), I stopped creating the series on a daily basis.
Images courtesy of the artist