Human understanding of the external world struggles to break away from linear logic. Historical cause and effect mold the present moment and the direction of the future. An artist’s practice is generally confined within a habitual summary with specific stylistic identifiers carved along the axis of time and different modules, in this seemingly rational logic, completing its inferred continuity. Abstract thought veils a perceptual medium. Human development radically terminates the deductions of mythical thought. Certain imaginative possibilities have been sealed off by time, and art has gradually become all but extinct, consumed by the external rationalworld.
As in response to this reality, artist Li Xinjian’s work presents the viewer with a long awaited alternative means.Production of the “Holy Mountain” series has been more like a ceremony, not simply an exercise in linguistic expression or a projection of his personal emotions. In the process of transformation, his perceptions, technique, and experiences fuse in various common ways, with depth replacing familiarity. Li Xinjian becomes more like a humble servant in relating the objects with which he is confronted. His is a state of mindfulness, not ecstasy. His distance implies reverence for natural objects touched in passing. Painting, here, is simply a fulcrum, an end that in actuality signifies the beginning.
The existing power of the Holy Mountain, worn down over millennia, penetrates the barrier of time and implies the heights and grandeur of life. We have never possessed everything, reincarnation, suffering, different generation of people steadfastly struggling for life, yet the necessity of death does not obscure a passion for life. The will to live is not abstract, is not like the existence of a concept, but an immense force tearing apart time’s constraints on humanity. “Art is life’s highest mission, and life’s essential form is that of learning.” Life’s burning rays of light illuminate the darkness of the void. Art is one of life’s plateaus, the essential meaning of existence.