Let it be the light that shines upon the way
Stone drawings by Chino Ng
In his book Everyday 100: a sequel, Yataro Matsuura tells a story about two stones — he himself as a white stone while a much slender stone being someone else. Matsuura says that no one stone is better or worse than the other, they are simply two different stones.
The story reminds me of why Chino is so obsessed with drawing stone: One day, he was trying to take a picture of his painting. Somehow the camera flash was on causing the light to reflect on a watery stone sitting nearby. That light reflection imprinted on his mind. From then on, he’d pick up stone, soak them in water, observe them, and then draw them. “Water magnifies and also distorts the texture and pattern of the stone. Smoothness and roughness contradict each other, yet they create such harmony when being placed alongside.”
When water flows over a stone, it causes countless forms of reflection of light. Chino said that he picks his stones intuitively. “The stone itself is made up of small minerals. Each one of them is unique, subtle and luxurious.” A stone might have traveled through thousands of years to be here and now. None of them are the same, and they don’t shine the same way when water flows over them. Therefore, each painting of stone by Chino is unique, and what he captured is the extraordinary fleeting moments. “It’s true that I might not be lucky enough to capture every fleeting moment, but I’d definitely stop and look if chances appear.” We are always attracted and moved by the same things because life is, afterall, an accumulation of thoughts and experiences. “I have the desire to touch anything that is reflective of light, or has a conflicting characteristic, such as jelly, moss, or mold on food.’
He can hardly take his eyes off the light reflected on water as it brings him peace of mind. “Eventually, I became addicted to the peacefulness it brings.”
在剛完結的展覽《until u r safe》裡，他用《姆明一族》作者Tove Jansson的一個短篇《The Stone》作引子，故事中的女孩在礦場裡發現一塊銀色大石，她是唯一珍而重之看待石頭的人，她滾啊滾把大石滾回家，心裡想著：「面對重要的事情，你要專心一致，挺有用的。把自己變得渺小，緊閉雙眼，然後重覆說著你所相信的，直至你安全。」Chino說，這很貼近自己的狀態。
In his recently ended exhibition, until u r safe, Chino used the creator of Moomings, Tove Jansson’s short story, The Stone, as a prelude. The story is about a girl who found a big silver stone in the mine and was determined to take it home with her as she found the stone so unique and special. As she rolled the stone back home, she said to herself, “You can close your mind to things if something is important enough. It works very well. You make yourself very small, shut your eyes tight and say a big word over and over again until you are safe.” Chino said that he feels for the girl.
As the story goes, the true meaning of its existence comes into light…
It wasn’t easy to roll the stone back to her house, but the girl made it. The first time she rolled the stone up the stairs, it fell. She tried again, and the stone fell again. This time, the stone fell all the way into the yard. It exploded like a meteor; covering the dustbins and the washing and all the steps and windows with silver.
I suppose when the stone falls, it falls like rain. It leaves a mark on everywhere it touches, but these marks will all disappear eventually. What’s left behind is the smell and sight that has already been imprinted on your mind. At the exhibition, I stood as far as possible when looking at the paintings of stones. Somehow it gave me the illusion that I am looking at the galaxy where there are countless billion years old stars glowing in the dark. Where there is light, there must be shadow, I reckon. Even though the sun looks huge to us on earth, it’s after all a tiny star in the universe.
If you can find that stone you cherish, let it be the light that shines upon the way which leads you to where you want to be. In fact, it doesn’t have to be a stone; it can be anything. As long as you cherish it and feel something special about it, it will explode like a meteor.
I asked Chino if there is a particular stone that resembles him, he said, “I suppose they all resemble me, because they are how I want to represent myself.”