Back

Portraying the appearance of the object, creating the artistic conception. Felicia Li interviewed by Klimt02

Interview  /  Artists   中文版-ChineseVersion
Published: 17.04.2019
Felicia Li Felicia Li
Author:
Klimt02
Edited by:
Klimt02
Edited at:
Barcelona
Edited on:
2019
Felicia Li. Necklace: The Runaway Water Sprite, 2017. Lacquer, silver, enamel, greenhide, steel.. 23 x 32.5 x 3.2 cm. Photo by: Will. Felicia Li
Necklace: The Runaway Water Sprite, 2017
Lacquer, silver, enamel, greenhide, steel.
23 x 32.5 x 3.2 cm
Photo by: Will
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.

Intro
Tracing back to the origin, Chinese traditional culture was formed through the interaction with different nationalities and cultural exchanges. Then I hope that my works can connect the Chinese culture's the concept of 'portraying the appearance of the object, creating the artistic conception' in Chinese culture with my personal inner feelings and emotions.

中文版 - Chinese version      View / hide description

What's local and universal in your artistic work?
I was born in the City of Xi'an, the ancient capital of thirteen dynasties, the epitome of the most glorious period in Chinese history. Influenced by what I constantly see and hear, I grew a Chang'an Complex. However, unlike Western art, art under the rule of Chinese feudal society needs to be observed and felt from multiple perspectives and dimensions. The emotions it conveys are never simple or straightforward, and the implicit artistic conception is never in single-level. It may be implied, superstitious, or even political and so on. With the deep down Chinese cultural consciousness and the influence of a traditional Chinese family, I will use different ways (color, texture or form) to embody emotions in the works. Tracing back to the origin, Chinese traditional culture was formed through the interaction with different nationalities and cultural exchanges. Then I hope that my works can connect the Chinese culture's the concept of portraying the appearance of the object, creating the artistic conception in Chinese culture with my personal inner feelings and emotions.
I practice a lot of traditional skills (including filigree, shadow puppet, enamel, etc.) so that these skills are integrated with me, so in my works, technically speaking, it’s still the traditional Chinese skills. Then came the question: why should I use this technique instead of others, why this material instead of the other, can I make the different texture or visual perception by using them... Influenced by contemporary jewelry artists, I found my own way to test materials, break those materials and techniques, mix and restructure, so that traditional techniques have a new form.


What do you expect when you show your work to the public (for example, with an exhibition)?
Rationally speaking, I don't care about the feedback. Every feedback is an interesting point of view, which can let me extract myself from the works and stand in different positions to re-examine them and myself. It can make me avoid self-indulgence and sink into the routine set by myself in the new creation in the future. Perceptively speaking, I hope I can make works that can resonate with everyone, but it seems that it is not now.

 
How important is handmade for you in your development? What role does technics and technology play in your development?
Up to now, most of my works are pure handmade, using a lot of traditional craftsmanship which is on the verge of being lost. I also care about the intuitive feeling and expression brought by hand-making, and some parts are irreplaceable by mechanization. Just like practicing a musical instrument, only when the playing fingering and technique become muscle memory, can it really become a part of me, but the numb repetitive practice has no soul. I want to subvert traditional techniques to create my own unique works, so I do not reject the use of scientific and technological means, so that I can explore more possibilities for handicraft.


When you start making a new piece what is your process? How much of it is a pre-formulated plan and how much do you let the material spontaneity lead you?
I have plans to go out, collect inspirations and work every year, but the final creative process is different, depending on the type of my current work. Of course, these all need an opportunity.


Are there any other areas besides the jewels present in your work?
At present, I own a brand of enamel watch, FELICIA & VON, which stems from my interest in mechanics and physics. At the same time, I also find that it seems that people are more willing to accept and approve this process in the form of enamel watch. In addition to making handicraft, I also love music, including piano performance. For artists, the emotion expressed through music is more direct and fast.

 
How important is wearability in contemporary jewellery? And in your pieces?
Conceptual jewelry can break the rules of wearability, but they may only stay in the exhibition hall. In my pieces, I still hope that jewelry and people can have a close relationship, wearers can have different understandings through wearing.


The last work, book, film, city that moved me was...
December 2017, in Hakone Open-air Museum, I viewed the exhibition Spontaneous Garden held by Japanese artist Yasuhiro Suzuki, which allowed me to find a new look of ordinary things, exciting.
In Maweiyi, Shanxi Province, a folk performing artist of Qinqiang Opera (An ancient opera originating more than two thousand years ago), Mr. Nan Chanfen, sang out the simple vicissitudes of life and the continuous reincarnation of the world in the earliest form of China's rock and roll. He has the purest strength and a powerful soul.


What/who is the biggest influence in your career?
I think it should be the lonely growth experience from my family and childhood. Most of the children who grow up in Chinese-style families have a neglected emotional education. At that time, I often felt that the heavy love from the elders was suffocating. I wanted to escape but tied up by my family, and eventually grew up silently insensitivity and loneliness. So in my own careers, I usually digest things and feelings on my own. But my husband's appearance let me put aside the restraint. I can do what is suitable for me and good at, instead of doing everything personally. I believe what I desire is to have a free soul.


Which piece or job gave you more satisfaction?
Not yet. First of all, I am still young. Secondly, in my short life, no matter in the period of rapid growth or bottleneck, by meeting different people and different things, my thoughts will keep changing, so it is difficult to define which piece can satisfy me.


What is your source to get information?
Some things that can touch me, such as a piece of music, a journey, a persistent person, grandma's hands, or the texture of a piece of soil, and so on.


Considering the experiences you have had over the years - if you could go back and give yourself a piece of advice for the start-up phase, what would that be?
All interesting experimental works, instantaneous feelings or opinions should be consciously organized and recorded. Running a studio is different from creating a piece. There are a lot of external disturbances. Stick to your original ideas and don't be anxious to form a team.


Can you describe your personality in 3 words, describe your work in 3 words.
My personality: humble, have no desire for secularity (selective memory), pursuing perfection in work.
My work: intensive, vigorous, complicated.
 
Felicia Li. Necklace: The Runaway Water Sprite, 2017. Lacquer, silver, enamel, greenhide, steel.. 23 x 32.5 x 3.2 cm. Photo by: Will. In context.. Felicia Li
Necklace: The Runaway Water Sprite, 2017
Lacquer, silver, enamel, greenhide, steel.
23 x 32.5 x 3.2 cm
Photo by: Will

In context.

© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Felicia Li. Brooch: The Runaway Water Sprite, 2017. Lacquer, silver, enamel, greenhide, steel.. 13 x 8.5 x 1.5 cm. Photo by: Will. Felicia Li
Brooch: The Runaway Water Sprite, 2017
Lacquer, silver, enamel, greenhide, steel.
13 x 8.5 x 1.5 cm
Photo by: Will
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Felicia Li. Brooch: The Heart Laurel, 2015. Silver, crystal.. 5 x 6.8 x 5 cm. Photo by: Sunmo Feng. Felicia Li
Brooch: The Heart Laurel, 2015
Silver, crystal.
5 x 6.8 x 5 cm
Photo by: Sunmo Feng
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Appreciate APPRECIATE