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"On Leaving The Shadow World: Jeffrey du Vallier d'Aragon Aranita"
2004-12-03 until 2004-12-10
Museum 63 / Artist Commune
Hong Kong, ,
HK Hong Kong
If you try to see the images in this cycle by Hong Kong- and France-based painter, photographer, new media artist Jeffre du Vallier d'Aragon Aranita as koan–paradoxical sayings, stories, or questions used as subjects for meditation in Zen training–then you can begin to understand how seemingly random images like road construction markings, national flags and anti-gay graffiti are related–each belonging to a world within a world, rich with attractive meanings that may ultimately be meaningless.
Aranita's bold colours and sublime technique dramatically link these symbols of aspects of the human cosmos–the shadow world–to portray them as one sweeping and continuous force. The symbolism of this union and the unconventionality of the style in which these images are rendered encapsulate the spirit of Zen. Like koan, they recreate a sense of being, gently guiding us to seek answers that make sense in other, more intuitive ways. –Machiko Kuroda
On Leaving The Shadow World is an art cycle Aranita began in 1997 that is still incomplete. It reflects time-filtered memories of the blind shamanist grandmother Aranita lived with in Japan, when he was orphaned at age three, and the experiences of a young boy, hiding and secretly watching her connect others with the spirit world. His life as a young Zen novitiate monk apprenticed to a hanga (woodcut) artist, comes into play as Aranita considers the shadow world of concepts, passions and conceits–the world we share in everyday life on the road traveled towards enlightenment. Born in Moorea, French Polynesia, 1954, Aranita was unanimously awarded the 2004 Sovereign Contemporary Asian Art Award, the largest privately endowed art prize in Asia. Trained in photography by Ansel Adams and Minor White, Aranita was an arts professor at the Baptist University and the City University of Hong Kong. In addition to his international arts practice he is Research Fellow in Arts and Culture for social policy think tank Civic Exchange in Hong Kong.