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When You Stare Into the Abyss, 48*72in, Acrylic on Canvas, Besharat Gallery, Atlanta, 2019



Webson Ji
March 18th, 2019

“When you stare into the abyss the abyss stares back at you.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche

Water is a vision to me.

Initially, I was working on the still state of the water, the capture of the rain, the moment water ripples and flows. I focused on the meditative perspective of seeing such a malleable material. Water is like a self-exploration of myself. The emotions I feel during my regular life lately drives this unstoppable motion that I think I can not control. I absorbed the process and decided to let it go.

Black Water is more like a self-portrait of all the emotions that I am going through. No color palette, no severe brush marks, no specific textures or patterns, nothing. Left alone in a foreign country, knowing there is no one from my past that I can turn to, standing in the middle of the unknown.

I feel like it is okay to stay in solitude. It is okay to live with loneliness. It is okay to bear with vulnerability. The black water will take away everything and keep going. It is all about that moment, the unknown. All the differences between age, gender, class, race will be washed away, and all that left is the soul itself.

It is about diving into the unknown. To run. To roar. To blast. Water can flow, or it can crash. As I looked deeper into myself, I see the black water.

It’s not the beginning of the end. It’s the end of the beginning.

Project Black Water examines Webson's experiences of moving to the States. The series showcases his recent works including site-specific sculpture, alongside painting and drawing.