Wang Haiyang

Freud, Fish and Butterfly
April 9, 2020

Freud, Fish and Butterfly is Wang Haiyang's first animated video work. To accomplish this work, the artist repeatedly painted the sequence of images onto one single sheet of sandpaper. The final painting in coloured chalk can be seen hanging on the wall at the end of the video. The painting not only illustrates the fluid process of constructing the ever-changing images, but also explains how, for Wang Haiyang, animation is a form of painting in which objects transform naturally, only retaining bits and pieces of their original here and there as visual pivot points used in this process of transmogrification. Butterflies, embryos, fish bellies, the inside of an egg, a mouth cavity or genitals –everything is in a constant state of flux. The self-replicating shapes of these objects remind the viewer of the sequel of characters in the artist's early work series Boys. The visual logic of these objects resembles the language of dreams, seemingly to what is proposed in psycho- analysis: metaphor and metonymy.