The Art of War

Big Bruce Lee

Mu Pan is a Taiwanese artist currently based in New York City. With influences ranging from Hong Kong cinema of the 1980s and 1990s to Japanese manga and kaiju movies, Mu incorporates elements of Chinese history and mythology to tell epic stories and legends with modern sensibilities. Mu’s artwork is never about art for its own sake – in his own words, “I am just an otaku who draws.”


潘慕文(Mu Pan)是一名现居纽约的台湾艺术家。他融合中国历史和神话元素,用画作来讲述具有现代感的史诗故事和传奇,从80、90年代的香港电影到日本漫画和怪兽电影,都对潘慕文的作品产生了很大的影响。他的艺术作品从来不只是为了创作而创作,用他自己的话说,“我只是一个画画的宅男”。

From the The Loyal Retainers series. / 来自《The Loyal Retainers》系列
From the The Loyal Retainers series. / 来自《The Loyal Retainers》系列
From the Ten Drawings series. / 来自《Ten Drawings》系列

As an artist who tells stories of epic, large-scale battles, war is one of Mu’s primary inspirations. He shares, “War, to some degree, is a beautiful thing to me. War creates great characters, and it also writes history. You’ve got to be a great artist in order to fight a war as a commander. There are so many arts you have to master in warfare, such as the formation, the economic concern, the time, the strategy, the geographic advantage, the numbers difference between you and your enemy, the art of brainwashing for loyalty, and the sense of mission. It costs a great amount of patience, and it also requires a high level of charisma and intelligence. Whether it is for invading or defending, to me it is just beautiful to see how a person can unite people’s individual strengths to become one great power to fight against the opponent.”


作为一个描绘史诗、大规模军事场面的艺术家,战争是他创作的主要灵感之一。他解释道:“对我而言,战争某种层面上是一件美丽的事情。战争创造了伟大的人物,也书写了历史。要成为战争中的指挥官,首先你必须是一位出色的艺术家。在战争中,必须掌握的艺术非常多,编队、经济问题、时间、策略、地理优势、我军与敌军在人数上的差异、关于忠诚与使命感的洗脑式说话艺术等等。这些都需要很大的耐心,同时也需要极大的魅力和智慧。无论是侵略还是防守,对我来说,看着一个人如何团结其他个体,凝聚成为对抗对手的巨大力量,这个过程真是充满了美感。”

Loyal Retainer: Final Chapter
Dinoasshole Chapter 3
Dinoasshole Chapter 5

Mu often draws from the theatre of modern events to find inspiration for his work. “Usually, when I’m excited about something I saw or read on the media, or from my daily life, I first associate the subject with a monster or some creatures on a large scale, then think about who it will be fighting with.”


潘慕文经常从现代事件中汲取创作的灵感。 “如果我从媒体、日常生活中看到或读到一些令我感兴趣的东西时,我会把这个主题延伸联想出某个怪物或是一些体型庞大的生物,然后去构想这只怪物开战的对象。”

From the Ten Drawings series. / 来自《Ten Drawings》系列
My Name is Charlie: Yellow
My Name is Charlie: Red

With regards to his creative process, Mu is about spontaneity and creating in the moment. He never creates preliminary sketches for a painting, preferring to work freely and make changes on the fly. As each painting progresses, it reflects the emotions and events of his daily life. “I let the piece flow with whatever is happening in my life,” he explains. “This gives me the motivation to keep going day after day.”


谈到自己的创作过程,潘慕文说主要都是自发性和即兴的创作。绘画时,他从来不会先画草图,而是更喜欢自由地创作,随心所欲地作出改变。每幅画在完成的过程中,反映出的正是他平日生活里的情绪和经历。他解释说:“我把作品与我生活中发生的一切交织在一起,这给了我继续前进的动力。”

From the Frog Wars series. / 来自《Frog Wars》系列

For Mu, art is a way to channel man’s energy, destructive power, and warlike disposition within the constraints of modern society. “I worship the strength of men and animals,” he tells us. “I dream to have the dominating power to rule, to destroy, and instill fear into my enemies. Of course, it’s impossible. No one can have this kind of power in today’s world. So I created my own world for myself with my images. In my images, I can be whatever I want to be and eat whoever I hate. Every monster I draw is actually a self-portrait.”


对潘慕文来说,艺术是在现代社会的制约下,人们得以发泄内心能量、破坏力和战争倾向的一种方式。他解释道:“我崇拜人和动物的力量。我梦想拥有支配权力来统治、摧毁,让敌人畏惧我。当然,这都是不可能实现的。今天的世界上没有人能拥有这样的力量。所以我用画像来为自己创造这样一个世界。在我的画里,我可以做任何我想做的事情,吃掉我讨厌的人。我画的每个怪物其实都是一幅自画像。”

From the Monkeys series. / 来自《Monkeys》系列
From the Ten Drawings series. / 来自《Ten Drawings》系列
Big Bad Wolves

Website: mupan.com
Instagram: @mupan1911

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao


网站mupan.com
Instagram@mupan1911

 

供稿人: George Zhi Zhao