Composed of more than 20,000 Chinese characters, these intricate sculptures by Zheng Lu are soft and seamless in appearance despite their stainless steel makeup. The characters used are all chosen from Chinese texts and poems. For example, the sculpture that looks like a splash of water is cunningly crafted from the lines of the poem Wan Zhi Shui (Playing With Water) written by the Tang Dynasty poet Bai Juyi. This playfulness with details can be seen throughout Lu’s work. When discussing the use of one of the most original Chinese fonts in a specific piece, he said, “You would not figure that out from a distant view. Otherwise, it would not be fun.”
The contemporary Chinese sculptor has been interested in calligraphy for a long time. He grew up in a literary family with a strong traditional Chinese intellectual background and his father made him take up the practice of calligraphy when he was still very young. This skill is now apparent in much of his artwork and the inclusion of meaningful text brings a unique aesthetic and significance to Lu’s already elegant sculptures.