Florilegium: Distant Memories is an autobiographical, multi-component, immersive exhibition featuring an on-site installation by Sydney-based Taiwanese Australian artist Ruth Ju-shih Li 李如詩. Created over three weeks in the gallery, the raw clay installation gradually disintegrates over the duration of the exhibition (24 July-15 December 2023). Paired with porcelain pieces made in Jingdezhen-the ceramics capital of China and where Li's second studio is based-Florilegium: Distant Memories offers a fresh exploration of the revered ceramic medium.
Li's sculptural works draw from myriad cultural and spiritual connections to the artist's ancestral homeland of mainland China. Her practice uses intricate installations of fine porcelain self-reflectively to explore Li's deeply personal meditations on renewal, the natural cycles of life, and the passage of time. Speaking in the universal language of flowers, the artist's works act as chimerical microcosms of organic forms that are simultaneously autobiographical and contemplative of the ephemerality of the human condition. Building on this fascination, Li draws inspiration from the language of dreams, of myths and of utopias to examine cultural confluences.
About the Artist
Ruth Ju-shih Li 李如詩 is a Taiwanese-Australian artist whose works draws on her cultural and spiritual heritage. She uses time as a material and collaborates with nature and natural elements to create a tension of fragility and impermanence between the staged works and the viewer.
Li has exhibited at venues worldwide including the New Taipei City Yingge Ceramics Museum, Jingdezhen China Ceramics Museum, Tsing Hua University Gallery, Kyoto ceramics Centre, Taoxichuan Museum, National Taiwan University of the Arts and 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. Li was also invited to present at the 11th UAUSS Symposium (in Turkey) and 16th Australian Ceramics Triennale as well as the 2020 Taiwan Ceramics Biennale and the 2019 Korean International Ceramic Biennale.
Li has been featured in various publications and media including Art Guide Australia, SBS Mandarin, China Daily News, Financial Times (Taiwan), The Journal of Australian Ceramics, and New Ceramics: The European Ceramics Magazine (EU).
Li divides her time between her studio in Sydney, her birth city of Taipei and her ancestral homeland of China in the porcelain city of Jingdezhen.