Language, body movement, dance, music, narration,
Presenting visual dynamic images on the stage
Cutting, inlaying, as a freeze-frame of contemplation;
Integrating with each other, no longer a phantom,
Achieving an eternal artistic expression
Jiangsu Grand Theater, the modern grand theater second only to the Beijing National Grand Theater. It consists of four independent theaters, including the opera hall with 2,280 seats, the drama hall with 1,000 seats, the concert hall with 1,500 seats the large arts hall with 2,711 seats and the small arts hall with 780 seats; it is designated as the “display platform of world-class works of art, exchange platform of international art activities and promotion platform of public-benefit art education”.
Author | Li Xiangwei
The former dean, professor and doctoral research tutor of the school of Academy of Fine Arts of Nanjing Normal University,
Member of the National Master of Fine Arts (MFA) Education Steering Committee
Vice chairman of Jiangsu Province Artists Association
Vice president of Jiangsu Province Architectural Mural Society
Mural Works | “Chinese Drama • Hundred Flowers Contending in Beauty”
The creation of this mural takes Chinese traditional opera as its theme, with the content selected from the traditional classic repertoire, such as “Legend of the White Snake”, “Wusong Fighting in the Inn”, “Tale of Iron Bow”, “Peony Pavilion”, “Farewell My Concubine”, “The Case of Chen Shimei”, “Divergence”, "Xu Ce Running on the Ramparts”, “Lady General Mu Takes Command”, “Caoqiao Pass”, “Drunkened Concubine”, etc. It combines with the characters of Sheng, Dan, Jing, Chou and so forth to present itself with the classic stage pose. The background is the warm-toned large flowers, implying the prosperity of theatrical art. The mural shaping emphasizes the Chinese style and the plane decoration, and expresses the broad and profound cultural connotation and graceful artistic characteristics of Chinese opera through the elements of characters, costumes, props, background and other and intense overall atmosphere.
The mural work is made from glass mosaic material with high physical stability and rich expressive force of colors. Through diverse combinations of techniques, it presents the original creation intention of the author and the artistic effect to the greatest extent.
Difficulty I: Control of same-color material determination
In order to present the splendid history of Chinese opera, the entire work is controlled with a strong warm-toned atmosphere. Since the background of the work and all the characters need to be unified in this tone, the craft technicians of JNJ mosaic and the author have spent a lot of time to select materials and determine colors before the production, in order to ensure accurate and proper performance of the work. Especially, the tones of the sky and the ground in the background require the production of three kinds of raw materials for the color determination.
All the hooking lines in this a work adopt warm-toned material, and in the same color system performs the transition from light to dark in order to highlight the three-dimensional sense. In the production process, the technicians repeatedly discuss the adjustment and modification with the author to meet the requirements of the overall large picture, which is one of the difficulties.
Difficulty II: Rigorous detail depiction
In the production process, the depiction of each profile, the radian of the lines and the subtle changes of the shaping need to be accurately handled; especially, the detail depiction of the faces and headdresses of the characters have very high requirements.
Difficulty III: Proper level relationship
In order to more accurately express the picture of the major characters, several parts such as the scenery in the scene setting (red flowers, plantain, high buildings etc.), the ground and the sky are treated with the level control, which makes the picture has distinct levels and at the same time harmoniously immerses in the brilliant atmosphere.
Curved background walls cannot be measured with the conventional methods, but require the professional construction staff to repeatedly carry out the infrared positioning and measurement; in order to ensure the smoothness and beauty of the work, JNJ mosaic construction team performs an all-round analysis of this construction program through a number of on-site inspection.
The pattern of this mural work has rich details, so the construction team of JNJ mosaic brand has to carefully examine the accuracy of restoration for each element. After repeated measurements, verification, embedding and adjustment with rigorous checks at all levels, the team has ultimately broken through all the difficulties, presenting the accurate and beautiful picture.
In this mural work, we profoundly grasp the key features of the characters, scene setting and background of the operas, showing the sense of depth and the sense of space with exquisite handcraft techniques. The magnificent visual effect has a wonderful beauty of the decorative plane!
We engrave the Chinese quintessence in our mind with artistic form of mosaic – the classic and brilliant theatrical art. The elaborate cutting lines fully express the exquisite theatrical art; when facing the picture and gazing at it with contemplation, you will be amazed by the profound and long-standing Chinese art and culture. Theatrical art integrates with mosaic art here to bring about the gorgeous visual movement, bursting into a wonderful bloom!