Mesmerizing – This is the word that come to mind whenever I see one of Johnson Tsang’s pieces. One of my favourite sculptors, his detailed porcelain creations are something to behold. At times, he uses his medium to make pointed political statements, with a touch of satire. At others, he captures fleeting moments in time, doing so to perfection in a medium that is notoriously difficult, prone to cracking and warping. Tsang’s artistic abilities and vivid imagination are awe inspiring. His series are not limited in scope – each is incredibly unique and delivers its own unique message. I am incredibly enchanted by each of his sculptures – I could create an entire blog about this artist. This post will cover the evolution of his pieces – from 2002 to 2017. Enjoy!
Cause & Effect – the mode of killing and the results, the victims. “Nobody is a winner in war” 2005
A work that is dedicated to those who strive for peace. ‘2004’
A Kiss of Eternity, 2009
Bowls of Fantasy, 2011
Open Mind, 2013
A Splash of Wonder XII, 2013
A Painful Pot, 2014
About the Artist
Johnson Tsang’s journey to becoming an artist was a circuitous one. He began his career as a police officer in Hong Kong and served for 13 years. However, in 1991 he discover clay and consequentely fell in love with the craft.. 2 years later, the self-taught artist resigned from his job to explore a new life….and I think we can all say “Thank God he Did”.
Seeing the dark side of humanity and his city has played an important role in shaping Tsang’s work, especially his older pieces. They lean towards depicting the darkness of the world in a surrealistic and provocatively gory manner, holding no punches for the viewer.
Over time, there was a definite evolution in his sculptures – a shift from darkness to light, from hopelessness to optimism. I can’t help but think that in the begging, he was coming to terms with all of the brutality he had seen as a police officer and channeling it into his sculptures. When he had made peace with this darkness, his sculptures began having a more whimsical and lighthearted vibe.
Tsang is renowned for capturing the fluidity of both physical motion and human emotion, as well as challenging viewers to see the world through their inner child. His mind-bending sculptures are incredibly delicate feats that tend to defy gravity itself. While he dabbled in other materials – stainless steel casting and woodworking – he has always returns to porcelain. 26 years later, he is one of the most celebrated ceramic artist, with sculptures being exhibited through the world.
Look at these guys, with their oversized heads, watery eyes, and pouty mouths – cute doesn’t even begin to cover it.
Tsang is well know for his expressive baby faces – each one is precious and unique. His method of leaving everything but the eyes unglazed and uncoloured, acts to pull the focus to their meticulously painted eyes.
“My works depicting babies were expressing my point of view to the world through the eyes of a child—my inner child.” – Johnson Tsang