Ai-Wen Wu Kratz
Ai-Wen Wu Kratz is a native of Hong Kong, China. She holds a BFA degree in Painting and Mathematics from Fort Wright College, Spokane, Washington; a MFA degree in Painting and Printmaking from Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. She is an alumna of Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, Maine; and of New York Studio School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture. New York, NY. She holds a Diploma from Institute For Writers (Formerly Long Ridge Writers Group), Madison, CT. In addition to the U.S., she had One-Person Exhibitions in France, Germany, England and Egypt. Her first exhibition in Vienna, Austria was in 2013, at Gallery M. Her works are in collections in Canada, Germany, Bangladesh, Argentina and the U.S., including the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, St. Louis, MO.
When an astronaut looks down to the planet earth from the International Space Station and, MAGICALLY, he can see that all fields of human knowledge, from Science to Philosophy, are in a constant flow moving forward. However, when he takes a closer look, he finds one single stream motionless and it is labeled, ‘Visual Art’; we practitioners in the visual art, would be hurtfully disappointed.
On visual art, Ezra Pound said, “Make it new.” That is, we must make art which bears our own Time Signature. Along with medicine, engineering and all other fields, art is in a constant quest for discovery. It is not newness for newness’ sake. Rather, it is to respond to our intellectual query within. Contemporary art, often, does not deliver literal images, but invites the viewer to make visible his or her association, based on the visual elements presented. Since associations may vary, creativity is multiplied and is contributed by the viewer as well.
I see a parallel between visual arts and writing. For example, about the Amazon River, a line such as, “This river, a wound on the earth, carved by serpents as they passed,” has more apprehensive power over me than the seven thousand words or more in the Wikipedia reporting on facts of the river. In writing, choice of words, their combination and order give the power and conviction in deliverance. I dream of using lines, colors, planes, forms, shapes and movements to create visual poems.
I am interested in contemporary stage design, choreographic lines in dance and the marvel of vocal art and operatic lyrics. I grew up in one of the high-rise apartments in Hong Kong, which ranks as the world’s fourth in population density. The skyward expansion in architecture and the twenty-four-seven city activities had fostered my ability to cope, a dutiful sense of community wellness, and an appreciation for higher education. The greatest of all, the lack of ready-made toys in childhood gave birth to my imagination and association for creativity.