I met Ruth when she and I were both artists-in-residence in Taiwan and I was so lucky to have her as my studio mate for those three months! Being Taiwanese-Australian, and having had spent time in Taiwan, she knew all the fun places to go and could speak and read the language; without her, I would of missed a lot of cultural opportunities that I’m so grateful I was able to experience. Even simply ordering dinner at a restaurant would of been a different (read: challenging!) experience without her.
In addition to being studio mates for those three months, she happened to also have a solo exhibition during our residency. I was able to help her install her works, learning more about her concepts and process along the way. Her fired porcelain works with imagined flower forms and bird parts are intimidatingly delicate and alluringly gorgeous all at the same time. But I really loved watching her build her ephemeral flower arrangements on antique planter tables over the course of a few days, after which they had water slowly dripping on them for the course of the exhibition, slowly letting them disintegrate. Her work is all about life, time and death taking inspiration from the natural world and the Garden of Eden. I really encourage you to watch the video below about her process of creating these time based pieces, it’s simply beautiful.
About Ruth Ju-Shih Li’s Work: Autobiographical in nature, Li’s ephemeral installations act as a metaphorical meditation on the fragile paradox of life and death in relation to the self, extending onwards to consider the transitory nature of the human condition. Drawing on her personal narrative, diverse cultural and spiritual heritage, Li’s creations partake in the very living creative thought that underlies nature itself and sounds a note of the metaphysical, linking the individual and the universal on the bridge of the spiritual.
Artists Sharing Artists: is a series of posts where I share some of my favorite artists who are also inspired by nature and use their art to protect what they love. More artists coming soon…