Interview Wu Junyong

Interviewed by Mianbu

Location: Wu Junyong Studio


A Dialogue with Wu Junyong·Visualization of Language


Mianbu: M

Wu Junyong: W


M: It’s good to be an artist. As a Chinese poet, we’re all facing the first language problem. We’re unable to write in English. However, the creation of artist is international, in which no problem of understanding would exist because of language barrier.


W: A lot of things in my creation are related to language. I like playing with the words. For example, slangs like boasting, smooth talkingword of mouth all have images in them, so they can be visualized.


M: There’re also some very important slangs in A Dream of Red Mansions. Forexample, Baoyu says he felt blue when he saw Daiyu playing with other boys. The word “blue” is visualized when read by the readers. This is one of the properties in Chinese.


W: There’re images in Chinese. The word “Blue” has its color here.


M: Another example is “Awakening”, which is also like this. We don’t have much grammar in Chinese, so things are all worked out word by word.


W: Correct, each word has strong power, and has another kind of expression space.


M: No need to use Chinese or English, just use the images, so everyone could understand it.


W: Ha Ha.

M: You started from studying prints making, while working on new media now. What made this change of you?


W: Prints are quite dependent. You can hardly continue the handwork and require those equipment after leaving that environment.


M: You did all the soundtracks in your animations by yourself?


W: Yes, I did them all myself from beginning to end.


M: Find anyone for help?


W: I tried to, but we didn’t fit well with each other. I didn’t know what I want, so I can’t express to those musicians.


M: So in general, how many works of this kind you will create in one year?


W: If you mean the animation, one in a year only. There’re a lot of fragments, while I’m not sure when they will work. It’s always slow. I work slowly.


M: That’s hard, by doing frame by frame.


W: It’s a process of growing out. It needs a long-time accumulation in creations.


M: Your work is distinctive, determined, and relevant to language.


W: It’s interesting, like a game.


M: You’re a genius who works effortless. You always have your words at hand when creating. This can hardly be done only through cultural accumulation.


W: I’m sensitive to words.


M: Will you come back to Beijing?


W: I prefer the idea of a movable studio, so I will stay for a while at each place, such as Shanghai, Xiamen, Beijing, Hangzhou. I like Xiamen more, as it has many yummy foods, and a good weather. I like staying at a warm place.


M: Your work makes smart people smile. Will you try to make something personal but more majestic and grand? Like an epic?


W: I’m not sure whether it will be grand. I think I’ve already passed the state of realistic critique.