Due to my consistent appreciation of craft, I am fascinated with the ability to self-publish works on paper to assume responsibilities of both an artist and a craftsman. I see it as an exciting union of art and craft, because the adherence to the autonomy of the artist as well as the nonjudgemental mentality of the craftsman can collaborate to promote unanticipated yet enormous artistic breakthrough. Such precise moments of manipulating the ego of both the artist and the craftsman inform my most recent practice: I am interested in well-thought-of and well-done works which are executed swiftly, and the desire to balance art and craft as two intrinsically contrasting “characters” which demand different modes of physicality ensures that my work eludes my preconceptions and, at times, myself. It is an act of taking nothing for granted, including my body (hand-mind coordination), the location (atelier stools), and the material (push pins), and such genuine yet intentional gestures of self-scrutiny also conceal the artist’s ineffable vulnerability in other places.
        Besides an artistic practice, I also hope to impart a contemporary context to my work through theorization. Albers was exceptionally well-versed in terms of the binarized relationship between effort and effect, but the location for such an equation in contemporary settings might no longer have the privilege to be taken for granted, because the precise definitions of the boundary of the work capably live in flux. The center of the foci of contemporary artistic expressions travels to areas which are historically less explored, resulting in a polyphonic arena showcasing bottom-up and periphery-in strategies. Where, ultimately, does an artwork reside? I find it logical to launch a polemic calling for such a genuine undertaking and to reconnoiter a few possibilities vis-a-vis the locations of effort, effect, and the in-between.
        Ultimately, Tongji Philip Qian’s work highlights his interest in unpacking his ego, atomizing it, and finally freeing it. It is his most intimate collaboration with aging.