Maternal Love

Nature’s organic forms often serve as inspiration for Li’s works, and in Peony, a small Buddhist figure emerges from the unfurling petals of a blazing red peony flower. This is the first time the sculptor introduces the colour red to his Spiritual Journey Through the Great Ether series, the most successful and popular series of the artist, establishing a warm vibrant life force that engulfs his celestial being. Here, Li celebrates the beauty and purity of maternal love, using the peony as a metaphor for the experience of birth. Li captures the exact moment an innocent child leaves the womb and is born into the world. Indeed, the figure has yet to open its eyes, and thus exists as a pure, untainted entity. There is an extravagance in the undulating vermillion form, almost a throne cradling the newly born child, signifying the grand importance of this natural phenomenon. 

Installation view, Being: In/Voluntary Drift – Li Chen Solo Exhibition, Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei, 2017 (another example exhibited)

Both the peony, and the peony as a metaphor for woman, are creations of Mother Nature, ‘the purity of beginning of all things’ i. Dimitri Bruyas has also suggested that the peony implies the relationship between Gautama Buddha and the Lotus flower, ‘in which the Buddha was born in the world yet lived unsoiled by the world’ i. In this way, the sculpture ‘hints at the highest level of “Spirituality” in Li Chen’s dichotomy’ i.

Published by maryshannonhurst

My name is Mary Shannon Hurst, I am a mother of three children, and two grandchildren. Making the transition navigating my way through teenage pregnancy, motherhood, marriages, divorces and navigating sisterhood, job skills training, community relations, international relations, cultural relations, and educating children begins as soon as they are conceived from the foods that go into their mouths the nutrition that they eat, if they get enough sunshine, and exercise fresh air hugs and love and attention. I believe there is a reason and a purpose for everything, from scribbles, to spilled paint, over spray happens, paint bleeds, chalk dust gets up your nose you sneeze. Just like pollen in the air, and dust in the air makes you sneeze and some people pee a little but when they sneeze. If you make a mistake, or have an accident you clean it up. You laugh, a little or cry a little or a lot and go on about your day, you own it. Clean up your mess. Always find a reason to smile, find some joy in everyday. Always be kind. And Pay it Forward. Tell someone you Love them, Have a Nice Blessed Day!

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