White Night 2017
On a winter evening ten years ago, I stood in a field on the outskirts of Chengdu surrounded by dense fog. The road stretched out before me, but the fog soon flooded my options. The sky was getting bleaker, the fog thicker. Whereever on earth I was, I could neither go forward nor back.
After a while, a flash of light from high up passed through the fog on the road in front of me like a lighthouse’s brief searching beam. A tree, a huge Christmas tree, seems to fall from the sky, lighting up a fantasy world. Inexplicable monsters clawed the sides, strange men and women creaked as they danced mechanically, incomparably tall lotuses glowed like giant jellyfish, a grinning panda ambled towards me. Looking around, the night in the field was, in an instant, growing ever brighter, showing this wonderfully bizarre scene, staged just for me.
For many years I have obsessed over the adventures of that night, the light of the Christmas tree that showed me another world, allowing me to witness more and more incredible things, people struggling to their death, a man carrying the head of another, people with butterfly wings, someone coming towards me clenching a razor, lightning at a wedding banquet. Are they all not a continuation and repetition of the white night. True or illusory?It hasn’t been clear for the longest time. Just like at that moment, I couldn’t tell day from night.
This is the world of day and night, and also my world.