2021 Grad Show

Yun Yue Tao

AUArts Grad Show Panda Plate


I am interested in mythical stories and Chinese poetry. These interests translate to making mini landscapes, based on how I imagine the scene will look and the description of the story. I am researching my Chinese culture of myths, and stories behind different poets or four-word idioms and translating them into three-dimensional ceramic forms. I have been using the Chinese mythical stories as references to develop my skills in making sculptures.
I create sculptures, objects and images that tell the story of a myth or a poem that I am interested in. Because of my interest in Daoism, I want to create scenes that depict the calm, peaceful, and beauty of nature that is described by the poet in the poems that I am researching. It also allows the viewer to empty out their thoughts, and escape from a busy and stressful life. Historically, mythical stories about animals and creatures would often tells moral stories; however, today these myths might be considered silly due to a lack of knowledge about nature in the past. My work is an attempt to preserve the importance of those stories because it is a form of cultural history, and use it for me to understand or know more about my own culture.

Deer Hiding in the Mountain

This piece is based on the poem from Li Bai and is about a person, in the morning, walking along the river, through the mountain to find someone. The person walking on the forest path often sees deer partly hidden and partly visible while also hearing the sound of the stream. Because the man did not find the person he wanted to find, he started to look around and savoured the scenery in front of him. This led him to forget the disappointment and only enjoyed nature. I have made the work with the bonsai vase and a drawing of a book to indicate my imagination of the scenery from reading the poem. I have hidden ten deers in the mountains to show the deer partly hidden and partly visible but also using it to show the quietness in the mountains.

Clothing Earings

The clothing colours can represent different meanings in different countries and during ancient times they can represent the kings in different countries. Yellow for China is only the Emperor can wear. Japan means nobility and aristocracy. Medieval& Renaissance represents envy, jealousy, duplicity, and also gods. Red for China represents wedding colour, good fortune. Japan is a colour that represents the King/Emperor, and protection from evil. Europe can represent luxury, royal, religious rank, and social status. Purple represents wealth, royalty, nobility, luxury and Purple represents wealth, royalty, nobility, luxury and power for all three countries but it once represents the King in Europe.

Purple = Europe
Yellow = China
Red = Japan

Nine Colour Deer

I have created small different figures and scenes on top of the bonsai base. The scene will be based on the mythical story of a nine-colour deer based on an Indian Buddhist Jataka story and discovered from the Mogao Cave in Dunhuang. The story is about a Persian merchant who is drowning in a river and gets saved by a nine-colour deer and the Persian merchant betrays the promise he has between the deer. In Buddhism deer symbolized harmony, happiness, peace and longevity. In the bible, deer symbolized honour, love, kindness, mercy, generosity, grace, piety and forgiveness. In Chinese culture, deer symbolize longevity and wealth.

Old man Fishing Alone

This is based on the poem from Liu Zhongyuan. The poem is about how there is no trace of birds on the surrounding mountains and no trace of people on the path. The only thing that is there is an old fisherman, on the river, wearing a bamboo hat and sitting alone in a boat. The piece I made expressed the loneliness and depression felt by the old fisherman who is sitting alone in the cold river. It also expresses the author's noble morality. I tried to make the drawings on the vase convey the loneliness of the author by using only white and black and through the presence of one, singular figure.

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