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Jocelyn Shu

Text and wire sculptures

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art by somerville artistJocelynShu titled81 Chapters (installation view)
81 Chapters (installation view) Cut text, wire, glue
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Artist's Statement

For several years, I have been working on a sculptural series called 81 Chapters.  In this ongoing series, I transform chapters of the Dao De Jing — a Chinese philosophical text — into sculptures made of cut text and wire. I create these pieces by hand-cutting the letters from a translated chapter and attaching the letters to wire. Then, I sculpt the wire into forms that hang from the ceiling and on the wall, as well as sit on the ground. More recently, I have begun to incorporate elements from the natural environment around me into this work.

I view the process of creating these pieces as a slow “translation” of the text. This process forms the basis from which I consider potential relationships between humans and nature, change and impermanence, and the imprecision of translating from one language, medium, and culture to another. Together, the pieces are intended to interact with each other and the space they are installed in.

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