(About the author: Senior Colonel Lv Guoying is a writer, literary critic, director of the Culture Department of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Daily and editor-in-chief of the Long March Supplement and a senior editor. He has written and published many literature works, commentaries, monographs and hundreds of art reviews. His monographs such as Art of the Three Poles, Road to Future Art (Chinese and English bilingual version), Pottery Madman, Shen Diao and Amazing Chinese People have been reprinted for many times. His commentaries such as Password of Jia's Landscape, Only Crazy Heart Makes Artist and Noble Character helps to enter Fantastic Realm have been reposted by lots of media. Many of Lv Guoying’s works have won important national or military awards.)
By Lv Guoying
The ultimate truth makes everything the most simple; the wise philosophers are free from perplexities.
No matter how deep the universe is, its nature is about space and time. No matter how boundless the space is, its essence is about material and spirit. No matter how broad the world is, its core remains nature and society. No matter how intangible the spirit is, its bone is thoughts and consciousness.
Undoubtedly, space, time, nature and all matters are objective existences as well as cognitive concepts (names). Spirit, thought and consciousness are subjective existences while reflecting the tangible matters. For this reason, everything in the universe, all aspects of society and human thoughts are matters of objective and subjective, which embody the integration of the objective and the subjective.
Furthermore, objective beings would be meaningless without subjective cognition, and subjective thoughts would be useless without reflecting the objective. However, there are numerous mysteries about objective matters, and there is much confusion on subjective thoughts. The objective follows the call of truth, and the subjective relies on thinking. This is how and why science and art are fostered. The research of nature depends on science, while the sublimation of spirit relies on art.
Science and art are not only parts of human civilization, but also accelerate the evolution of human civilization.
Obviously, both science and art are essential for the evolution and development of human civilization, and the two complement and guide each other and advance in parallel, rather than conflict each other. The value of science lies in finding answers to mysteries of the universe and unveiling the law of its operation; the importance of art lies in interpreting the secret codes of spirit and finding a peaceful place for the soul to rest.
A great philosopher once said, “Science and art break up at the foot of the mountain and meet at the summit.” The “foot of the mountain” refers to the fountainhead of civilization, and the “summit” the ultimate destination of civilization.
Throughout the evolution of human civilization, science and art have advanced hand in hand and complemented each other. Accompanied by philosophy, aesthetics and theology, art has always played the role of leading the development of science. Enlightened, inspired and enriched by the imagination of art, science takes the wings to fly into the far frontiers of nature and the physical world, and has reached the realms of not only molecule, atom, neutron and proton, but also quantum physics and gravitational wave, facing up with the challenges in the research of higher-dimensional space and parallel space. This reflects not only the extraordinary power of science, but also the unparalleled charm of art.
It is self-evident that as a stage or a path to explore space and time, science represents a kind of knowledge, result and being, which is embodied by the “objective”, demonstrated by “phenomena” and aims to reveal “truth”. As a form of understanding of spirit, feeling and aspiration, art represents a kind of ideal, aesthetics and state, which is used to express “emotions” and embody “imagination”, and aims to demonstrate “spirit.”
In the process of seeking truth, science has always questioned the existence of “imagination” but constantly verified the truth of “imagination” in realms such as macrocosm, microcosm and even ultra-microcosm. As it explores the way to express emotions and enrich spirit, art has always been committed to constructing “imagination” and making “imagination” fly, thus fostering figurative art, imagery art and even Ling Xiang art.
In one word, science tries to search and discover the beauty of truth in the universe (objective world), so as to find answers to mysteries of nature; art aims to chase and grasp the ultimate destination of beauty in the realm of spirit (subjective world), so as to achieve the freedom of soul.
In this context, science has always dedicated itself to clearing up doubts, and art has always submitted itself to spirit.
Thus, science represents a tough journey, and art represents the eternality of spirit.
Thus, science makes progress step by step, and art frees the soul at will.
Essentially, when seeking the truth of the world, scientists watch objects in macrocosm with their bare eyes, observe matters in microcosm with the help of instruments such as microscopes, and interpret things in ultra-microcosm with rationality—which is a kind of logic, conception and the “self” thought (subjectivity and reasoning). When embodying the imagination, figurative art uses Xiang (phenomena in reality), imagery art uses Si Xiang (connotations of real phenomena), abstract art uses Li Xiang (deviations of real phenomena), and Ling Xiang art uses Wu Xiang (formless phenomena). Using Wu Xiang to embody imagination is a way based on consciousness, which represents an embodiment of enriched spirit and ultimate beauty.
Today, scientists have gained insight into quantum physics and are exploring the logic of ultra-microcosm, while artists are working hard to overcome the impetuous trend and remove chaos and paradoxes, thus entering a new era of climbing onto the high summit of art. The research and practice of Qi Mo Ling Xiang represent not only a new vision, but also a new approach. The question is, as science is entering a stage of rational thinking and logical exploration of the micro world, when could art get rid of the entanglement of figurative, abstract and imagery genres and turn passive imagination embodiment into active imagination expression?
In fact, only through searching and constructing the ultimate beauty could science and art eventually meet and integrate. The beauty of Qi Mo Ling Xiang lies in both artistic imagination enriching spirit and scientific exploration through rationality, because everything has soul and is interconnected to others. Realizing imagination via Wu Xiang is the only road toward ultimate beauty. With a free soul, one can reach the final destination of his life.
Beijing, June, 2019