The boyhood dream of becoming a painter stays important to me.
Even though China was a very closed country, they thought of themselves as the center of the world. It is an ethnic characteristic. After I went to Japan, I had a totally different view. The Japanese are always talking about what the Western world is doing. There is the anxious feeling of an outsider.
I was growing up in a society that exerted a lot of control on people, and from both my personality and the social condition, I found gunpowder gradually as a very suitable medium for exploration.
Using gunpowder as a medium became a way to liberate myself.
When I was young, the constraints of Chinese society and my personal timid and cautious nature both drove me to seek a means to go against control. Gunpowder has an inherent uncertainty and uncontrollability and is an important means for me to relieve myself of constraint.
One reason I chose gunpowder is that I had the good luck in my environment to be exposed to gunpowder. The other reason is I was always looking for a visual language that goes beyond the boundary of nations, and so I found gunpowder.
I'm always oscillating between if I should sprinkle more gunpowder or less. But if I put too much gunpowder, there may be holes throughout the silk. If not enough, the power and energy would not be shown.
For an artist, a good place to be is you have some kind of influence and power to get things done, but in your essence you remain a nomad or a soldier facing a difficulty to be overcome.
Art should not be a tool of politics, but sometimes art can help make the political climate more open and help society become more free.
Only individual creativity can bring about real social development.