Weiwei Ruan (Kiwi)
Weiwei Ruan is a curatorial practitioner and a writer, born and raised in southern China. She is currently studying Curatorial Practice(Contemporary Art) at Glasgow School of Art and is also a Master’s student majoring in Art Theory at LuXun Academy of Fine Arts in China.
My Wind Blows Me to This Direction
Whether it is works of art of a religious nature, such as early Christian icons, medieval altarpieces, modernist abstract art and postmodernist art, such as Kandinsky’s paintings, Damien Hirst’s installations and Bill Viola’s video art, all show that spirituality is a timeless feature of art.
Easy to carry, to read and share, My Wind Blows Me to This Direction, is a publication project that presents artist interviews and selections of artworks and images that explore ideas of spirituality as represented within art. This project is the result of Weiwei’s research practice on “How Spirituality Might Be Produced Through Art Works”, is an ongoing exploration of spirituality in art, with a focus on the metaphysical interests of the artist proposing a new way of thinking about modern art. The pocket book contains text and visual material and will serve as a space for the exchange of ideas and the presentation of artworks. Invited artists, Xin Huang, Susan Yau, Yongyang Wu, Dorottya Szanka(Dorka) discuss the artworks and ideas that nourish and renew them in a series of interviews accompanied by a selection of images contributed through an open-call for submission. All of the contributors draw from their own experiences and genuinely share the spiritual atmosphere and healing power they felt from the different types of artwork, and together they create an intimate, harmonious atmosphere in the pocket book.
Calvino once wrote in Calvino in the Invisible City that, “… a book is something that has a beginning and an end, a space into which the reader must enter, walk around in it, and perhaps get lost in it, but at some point find an exit, perhaps more than one, and find a possibility that opens up a path to walk out.” Weiwei believes that in curatorial activities, curators create a spiritual space in which people are led to a ‘shift in consciousness’ that may lead to a subtle difference in the way people see things and the world. She would like to make this book a space that allows the audience to ‘opens up a path to walk out’, no matter it will be an outlet of imagination or an outlet of emotion. She has also got some inspirations from The Rothko Chapel, it is a very good example of a space where art and spirituality come together, the visitors are completely immersed in the ‘non-religious’ spiritual experience, she tried to create a ‘non-religious’ spiritual atmosphere for this little book as well.
Through the works and stories shared by different people, she hopes the audience’s reading process will be like a journey of spiritual experience. One of her friends LXY shared his feelings when watching a weathered Song Dynasty stone Buddha statue in the wild in Sichuan, China, he wrote，“I spent a long time alone that day looking at that deserted cliff, calm and moved inside. It was a work that healed me, it is very special because it was jointly created by the ancients of a thousand years ago and also the wind and rain of this thousand years. The Buddha is formless, although it looks damaged on the surface, it is not damaged in essence.” Another friend of her, Jane Skeer wrote, “Mother Me, an exhibition by Daisy Parris at the Carl Freedman Gallery in Margate earlier this year moved me to tears. I felt surrounded with love, emotion, but most of all I felt the freedom to scream out loud, and to cry. ” — In the space created by this pocket book, everyone’s participation goes beyond mere aesthetic contemplation and they were exploring the spiritual world that exists in their hearts.
Ideally opened at random in the intervals of time (such as coffee breaks, waiting for friends, queuing, taking transportation, sunbathing in the park), during the day, it is anticipated that the texts and images in this little book, will produce positive energy. Join in by putting this pocket book in your pocket and the pockets of those you care about, in the hope that it will go anywhere in the world and become a travelling pocket book (it does not need a passport and visa).
Supervisor: Dr. Karen Di Franco
Book Designer: Yunxin Ding