• 2012-05-11

    Japan / May 2012 / “驀然回首”-何見平日本ggg個展


    This June, invited by Japan DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion, I will have my solo exhibition “Flashback” at the ggg gallery in Tokyo, 65 pieces of my posters and publications will be exhibited. The opening will be held on June 5th, 17:30 to 19:00. There will also be a forum with honorable guest speakers including Kaoru Kasai , Hideki Nakajima, Wang Xu and  Guang Yu.

    I do hope I can have the honor of having you at the opening banquet:

    Theme: “flashback” - Jianping He Solo Exhibition by ggg
    Date: 5th - 28th June, 2012
    Time: 11:00am - 7:00pm
    Opening Ceremony: 5th June, 2012, 17:30-19:00
    Forum Speakers: Asaba Katsumi, Kaoru Kasai,  Hideki Nakajima, WangXu, Guang Yu, Jianping He
    Address: dnp ginza bldg. 7-7-2 ginza, chuo-ku tokyo 104-0061


    展覽日期: 2012年6月5日至6月28日開館時間: 上午11時至下午7時
    展覽地點: 東京中央區銀座7-7-2DNP銀座


    I wish to see you in Tokyo!

    Warm Regards,



    ggg  〮 flashback  〮Dali

    This is my first solo exhibition in Japan. With the unstinting support of  two forerunners, Mr .Shin Matsunaga  and Mr. Katsumi Asaba and the generous help of ginza graphic gallery, over fifty select posters and book design works from my 15-year career will be exhibited.

    I set out to select the works to exhibit in my Berlin studio as I started to ponder on the theme of the exhibition. I felt the warmth of the winter sun on me, and the snow out of the window became unreal, as if part of a stage set, and I felt no cold at all. The works casually littered on the studio floor triggered many memories, difficulties, and frustrations, interspersed with friendship and love.

    To render the word ‘flashback’ more visually intelligible, one may think of flashbacks in cinematography and reverse narrative in literature. They may bring sparkles of inspiration, or simply the resurrections of the past. In the Chinese context, I would choose ‘a sudden turn of my head’, a turn of phrase already imbued with the charm of a cinematographic cut. Moreover, for a designer, it vividly captures the pursuit for creative sparks. Every piece of my work comes with struggling and bears witness to the rather strenuous process of searching and exploring. The scenario Wang Guowei (1877 – 1927) aptly described as the third stage of scholarly achievement, ‘I searched high and low in the crowd. But as I suddenly turned my head, there she was in the end of the streets where lights were the dimmest’, would be a perfect ending for a designer.

    ‘A sudden turn of my head’ is a stop motion in time, which remained immaterial until the emergence of the clock. Since then time has been fixed within the twelve sections of the disk. Time has been shaped by accuracy, science and order. The moment when a shape is created and a figure finds expression also marks the end of the expansion of fantasy. Does man also create boundaries as he gives expression to his creativity? It applies to objects. What about graphic design?

    When it comes to time, I can’t avoid mentioning Dali. This great artist has afforded me a certain valor in thinking for a graphic designer like myself. He has broken many  boundaries in relation to the figure of time and created a kind of time that is soft and distorted, just like viscose drops of liquid falling from the edge of the table or hanging on a twig.

    The process of creating the posters featured in ‘Flashback’ was filled with various representations of Dali. I have asked my assistant to take pictures of an ancient Bodhi tree in front of my studio on a sunny winter day. In the rich nakedness of its foliage, one notices the protean lines drawn by individual branches that contribute to the overall peacefulness of the tree. Slowly I hung every letter of the alphabet on the tree, in the hope that I would not disturb its wintry poise, blessed with Buddhist wisdom.

    Jianping He
    Berlin, on the eve of March 12th, 2012

    The distant so close – Posters by Jianping He

    When you move from one culture to another you basically have two options. Either you decide to integrate or to live in a parallel world. So, what does a designer do whose first influences came from China, his second from Germany? Does he unite the two in harmony or pit one against the other in direct contrast? Jianping He's works, however, cannot be stuck in either drawer. Besides being influenced by two worlds, to me it seems the key to his success is his individual sense of creativity that goes into his posters. This freedom to use the means at his disposal gives rise to posters that would be unimaginable, both in China and in Germany, without the one or the other part. Coming from Jianping He, these works are wholly comprehensible in the way he borrows everything he needs for his final draft freely from either world. The decisive factor isn't which source he uses, it's how he uses it.

    Since the slow, but conscious approximation between western European states after the end of the Second World War, the possibility of defining a national historiography of the poster disappeared altogether in the course of the 1980s. Designers are a rambling people; one is German, studied in France, works in Denmark… Another, like Jianping He, is Chinese. He studied there and in Germany and now works in both countries. In this sense, he is at the spearhead of a new generation. Their context is no longer just their country or continent of origin; they tap potential from the contrasts between the cultures.

    The thing that fascinates me above all about posters of Jianping He is how they manage to present me with the familiar and the foreign at the same time or in a reciprocal effect – all on a single sheet of paper. For example, when the infinite bits and pieces that make up the large sum remain visible and comprehensible in their precision of execution, or if familiar messages can be read in the foreignness of the design, it seems as if two distant worlds are encountering each other and using the same formal vocabulary. And Jianping He manages to join the individual elements without ever calling their visual relationship to question.

    René Grohnert
    Director of German Poster Museum

    ggg  〮 flashback   〮 達利



    “Flashback”這個詞,更形象地理解:猶如電影中的鏡頭回閃、文學中的倒敘。可能帶來思緒的靈光閃耀,也可能是往日重現。而用中文語境來理解,我選擇“驀然回首”,這個詞本身就具備了電影鏡頭切換的魅力。更何況,對設計師而言,誰沒有遭遇過尋尋覓覓的艱辛過程呢。我的每件作品,幾乎沒有信手拈來的功力,反而刻錄了許多個尋尋覓覓的愚笨歷程。王靜安推為第三境的:“眾裡尋他千百度,驀然回首,那人卻在燈火闌珊處。” 對設計師而言,該是多麼美好的結局。


    談到時間,我的思想無法繞開達利。這位偉大藝術家帶給我,一位平面設計師,在思考上的勇敢。他打破人類在時間上的形象禁錮,柔軟和彎曲的時間被創造出來了 - 像粘稠液體從桌沿跌落,被掛上樹杈…










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  • COOL,有风格!!
  • Nurture passes nature.