Is there anything that could represent hope more than the young?
Is there anybody who has the confidence to squander their time more than the teenager?
The splendid future starts from the young and life starts to enrich from this point on.
A teenager is like a rose, which is ready to burst.
Actually, when I was a teenager, I didn't think that I, myself, was like this piece of artwork which my mother and I created after many years, and which looked so graceful that the doll was like a blooming flower. That was a rebellious and happy time. It's as if being a problem was one of the most important things that the young people were busily engaged in because it would give us a certain identity. However, that was the best memory of my life because I was so lucky that I did stupid things and made mistakes at the right time. In my whole middle school period, wherever I was, there were always a lot of friends like me, who were always looking for a chance to stir up trouble. Well, the saying, "Birds of a feather flock together" explained perfectly. I never thought that I was like a flower when I was young because words like flowers or leaves sounded so weak and childlike in our eyes then. We were always trying to be COOL. In school time, the only way that we could be cool was to challenge authority. Certainly, for students, there was no one more authoritative than the teachers who were standing on the platform at schools. Consequently, we never felt sham from punishments, such as "standing punishment" or "having our parents called", which belonged to the routine of "bad students". I remember at junior high school, almost every teacher who taught us had a face filled with despair when they left the classroom. However, they may not have thought that we were the very same students who would remember to visit them 20 years later. Unfortunately, we did not learn many useful things from the class, but during those naughty and unruly days, we understood what "feelings" meant. That was probably the most valuable thing we learnt at that time.
There was a teacher who once told me that I was a person who had 'feelings', and he said that was the finest praise he could give. I did not understand what it meant in my 20s. Long afterwards, I decided to go back to doing art with my mother, and neither of us expected that we would still be working together 10 years later. Then I was aware of that the so-called "having feelings" might be the ability of experiencing the happiness. It is true that I never doubted my choice since I decided to create art with my mum, though I knew choosing art might be like a road of no return. I got so much joy and surprise from it. It would be like suicide if your chose art for the purpose of fame or making money. However, it would be worth it, whatever life you choose, if all of what you've done is for getting a sense of belonging in your deep heart.
Now I am considered a person who has a great enthusiasm for studying, but I simply don't remember what I learned from class when I was a real student. All of my memories about studying are about being in a dreadful rush when final exams were around the corner or about creating a variety of cheating techniques in the examination hall. Unlike the top students who had been studying diligently for many years, my school-day memories are about skipping class, climbing mountains, camping, skating, or anything else that could be exciting. When I resolved to be a good student, I had already graduated from university. Truthfully, I am too old to be a good student right now. However, I feel better at the thought that I still can learn whatever I want to learn the rest of my life. I am still young enough to learn anything for my age.
Furthermore, I have to say that my mum is one of the important people who made me who I really am. I remember when I was 13, we energetic young people insisted on climbing a mountain which was a bit dangerous for children because we would have to travel several hours by bike to get the foot of the mountain. Moreover, there was a steep slope on the way of going down the hill, which means you might have an accident if you are not careful.
Certainly, most parents didn't allow such a ridiculous behaviour, especially not for girls. However, my mum told me a thousand times that I had to be careful when I climbed the mountain. Meanwhile, she also encouraged me to experience glorious life as early as possible. She always said that you might never be interested in challenges when you grow up. It would be better to do whatever you want as much as you can when you are young so that you won't regret when you are old. (Truthfully, for those of people who love challenges will never be bored their whole life.) Yet, my footprints covered almost the whole area where I lived since I was encouraged by my mother.
Perhaps I was tried of the fun, nearing graduation. Suddenly, I felt a surge of thirst for knowledge. However, my mum told me, sincerely and earnestly, that I could attend a technical school to learn a skill to make a living if I never had the slightest interest in studying, and that would also be a great life. Anyway, she thought that I had always had bad marks in school. Well, I got hot the moment I heard that. Who said I didn't like to study? I just had a different understanding about studying than my teachers. I didn't think students who got good grades could prove that they were the best, and I didn't think that students who got bad grades were the worst. Maybe the way the school taught was not good for everyone. Of course, I loved studying, and, I wanted to read a lot of books and learn as much as I could. Even during those years that I pitted my wits and courage against teachers, I never thought that I was a person who didn't like to study. After my inspiring speech, my mum believed and supported me loyally for dealing with the severe senior high school entrance examination, although she knew I had a weak foundation in studies. Of course, I echoed the trust she placed in me that I was full of passion to study, which was just like the time she encouraged me when I wanted to climb the mountain. I did a lot of work on my way to school afterwards, though it was not easy to get good marks as someone who had been an inferior student. Anyhow, I made it.
I always think that I am a super lucky person, because no matter how much "eccentricity" I sought after, my mum was the one who was always on my side. It seemed that she was never afraid that I would make mistakes, but rather that I would have regrets in my life. After many years, none of us expected that we would be partners as mother and daughter. Nevertheless, it makes sense when you really think about that she actually planted the seed of freedom in my heart from the very beginning, and we just realized that it is the harvest season now. Amazingly, it happened in a way that we never expected. I thought I had always had an air of rebelliousness, but when I recall the past, I realized that all of the so-called rebellion was just a memory of youth, which would never fade. It's like a blooming flower, which is not only delicate and charming, but it's also vibrant. No matter how presumptuous and fatuous we were, it was our best time.
This soft-sculpture is one of our favourite works, which is the second piece of Year, Teen, a series of works. It's an incredible thing to tell a story about lost and found of our lives in an artistic way. Moreover, we are always amazed from our own story and art.