Zi Xian 字 閒 (The Hanzi Space)

A research on language culture & its spatial philosophy; a representation of spatial-concept Han characters in space

Year  |  2017-18; 2019
Type  |  paper sculpture, language miniature of spatial-cultural research
Location  |  futuristic space within Han characters
Material  |  paper in kinds, metal, light & shadow

Invited exhibition under theme ‘Liquid’ in Motel Mozaïque Festival 2019, Theatre Rotterdam Schouwburg

Exhibited in MIARD 2018 Graduation Show, Rotterdam
“... It is both social and universal. The physical experience brings back our awareness and sensibility [...] I can imagine this work presents on a boulevard, extends endlessly.”

_quoted review by Ka-Tjun Hau, Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst.

The project is a research about the Han character xian 閒 (space, room, moment), related to both space and time. Inspired by the spatial-visual formulating principles of xian, it practices a new, universal architectural approach to realizing ideas from visual culture to spatial perception.

This delicately crafted space also investigates the intimate relationships among maker, materials, space and visitors. It realizes the sensibility of the author’s Asian culture in a contemporary spatial project.

閒 xian (space, room, moment) consists of the sign 月 (moon) in the middle of the sign 門 (door). It depicts the delicate moment of moonlight streaming through a gap in between the two-leaf door. Thus, a Han character is like a drawing. As describing & expressing, this spatial language allows visitors/readers to immerse themselves in 2D & 3D perceptions of the imaginary culture behind. 

Derived from the thesis research, the installation practices the minimalist aesthetics of subtlety and immerses visitors in a unique, poetic atmosphere—with the concept of xian (space) streaming down through immaterial qualities of light, shadow & time.

(above) the latest presentation in April during Motel Mozaique Festival 2019, Theatre Rotterdam Schouwburg.

(below) research process

© SZU-YI WANG. 2022