Fri, Jan 21, 2005 - Page 15 News List

Banchelin cast in stone

By Emily Drew  /  STAFF REPORTER

Yves Banchelin interacts with visitors at Juming Museum.

PHOTO COURTESY OF JUMING MUSEUM

Twenty-seven never-before-seen works by French sculptor and painter Yves Banchelin are on display at Juming Museum (朱銘美術館) in Jingshan Township, Taipei County (台北縣金山鄉). The show called Memory of Time: the painting and sculpture of Yves Banchelin (時光的記憶Yves Banchelin雕刻繪畫展) will be on display until March 20.

Banchelin's paintings and sculptures are influenced by the texture of minerals, their surfaces and colors. This, his most recent exhibit, stems from observations he made while participating in conservation projects at Lascaux Cave, France.

The 25,000-year-old cave paintings left a lasting impression on the artist and the Juming exhibit's theme, Memory of Time, reiterates what the cave paintings taught Banchelin: Human memory can be preserved in stone and can continually evoke stories in later generations.

The ancient, life-like cave paintings gave him a sense of communication between artist, art and viewer, and he called them "a powerful memory in time" in his statement to the Juming Museum.

Ju Ming (朱銘), Taiwan's premier sculptor, who designed, founded and leads, Juming Museum, first noticed Banchelin's stone sculptures at the Hualien International Stone Sculpture Symposium in 1997. Banchelin's work had been exhibited in Europe since the 1970s, but the Hualien symposium was his first exhibition in Taiwan.

Ju Ming was struck by Banchelin's skilful and balanced applications of Western abstract forms. The works impressed Ju Ming so much that the Juming Museum decided to organize an exhibit of Banchelin's works.

Banchelin's use of contrast is especially striking. He admitted, "I am good at playing with light and shadow, especially within the large-scaled projects. To me, those two elements compose certain visual effects of harmony and balance."

Banchelin said in his statement that it impossible for us to separate art and life and that we should seek to discover what is beyond what the eye can see.

"In my opinion," he said, "it is difficult to give an explanation to an art work." Banchelin said that while viewing art, an artist or art critic can only provide some guidelines or clues for other viewers. If they try to analyze an art piece too closely, it might eliminate an individual viewer's unique encounter with it.

If a unique encounter is what the art and viewer should have, then Juming Museum is a good fit for Banchelin's art.

Juming is a place where art, architecture and landscape mingle with guests on 32,000 ping of countryside, and it's a place where people can relax among artworks by Guy Buffet, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Joan Miro, Liao Ji-chun, Kuo Po-chuan, Yang Shan-liang, Hung Jui-lin, and, of course, Ju Ming.

Exhibition notes:

What: Memory of Time: the painting and sculpture of Yves Banchelin (時光的記憶 -- Yves Banchelin 雕刻繪畫展).

Where: Juming Museum (朱銘美術館), 2 Sheshihu, Jingshan Township, Taipei County (台北縣金山鄉西勢湖二號).

When: Exhibition runs until March 20, Tuesday to Sunday, 10:00am to 5:00pm. Closed on Mondays.

Tickets: Adult, NT$250; students and seniors, NT$220; groups of 15 or more and art majors, NT$200; disabled persons, NT$125; children under 110cm, free.

Telephone: (02) 2498 9940

How to get there: Arts bus from Taipei Fine Arts Museum, 8:40am or 1:10pm, NT $400.

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