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Inspiration from the East: Miniturisation and Philosophy

bonsai2

As an artist who is in the main influenced by contemporary western art it was with great interest that I revisited the ancient Eastern art forms of the well known Japanese Bonsai, the lesser known Chinese Penjing, and Vietnamese Hòn Non Bo. Miniturisation and scale in general has always fascinated me as a sculptor. As this project draws heavily from the microscopic worlds of the tree I was drawn to research these art forms while developing the artwork for the Cherry Blossom in particular.

I was also inspired by how these art forms seek to capture the essence and spirit of nature through contrasts. Penjing specifically are influenced by the principles of Taoism, the concept of Yin and Yang in particular: the idea of the universe as governed by two primal forces, opposing but complementary.

Some of the contrasting concepts used in penjing for example include portrayal of “dominance and…

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