The Art of Life – ‘God makes us like this’
It is often said that “life is art”, or “art is life”; we often seek to establish a relationship between art and life. Since there is a massive variance in the mode and content of every person’s daily existence, how is life revealed in art?
Bellini’s daily work involves largely with disabled people. She organizes art activities for them, hoping to help the handicapped to rekindle the fire of their lives. At the same time, she works relentlessly as an artist. The fact that her patients became an inspiration for her art has come as a pleasant surprise. After visiting her workplace, her patients and the exhibitions she puts together for them, I have come to grasp the profound sense of empathy and involvement necessary for Bellini’s occupation. How does a so-called “normal” person cope with and take care of people so different from her, people that others would consider peculiar? How does she immerse herself in the lives and feelings of those people?
Being born left-handed, Bellini had endured since childhood the distress of having an "odd" physical feature. Now, she tries to empathize with her patients' inner agony beneath their frail bodies, and their pain of having to face the discriminating look scattered on them. Life offers a myriad kind of experiences; yet the depth of each experience varies from the individual. The eagerness to share other’s feelings and to transform them into art sometimes requires one to relinquish the noble ideal about art but to embrace and celebrate humanity instead.
Bellini works in bold and straightforward ways to illustrate her subject matter: translucent sculptural forms with metal bolts bulging through, representing tree trunks. The juxtaposition of the warm, soft hues and the crude, heavy metal creates stunning visual effects but, at the same time, inspires a sense of awe in the viewer. Human beings are so different from one another, and there are numerous types of people in society. One’s understanding of the term “general folks” has to comprise more than one kind of people. Similarly, art and life are to be appreciated and understood according to their subtlety, intensity and diversity.
Written by Dr. Tang Ying Chi, Translated by Daisy Tan
Bellini Yu’s Art Installation Solo Exhibition