‘Mosquito’ is typical of Feng Shu’s interest in capturing the likeness of insects in porcelain — a relationship that the artist tracks back to growing up under China’s One Child Policy, and the loneliness culminating in time spent outside looking for insects to amuse him. The work is particularly sharp and balanced, the ceramic defying typical limits and delicate boundaries to reflect the fragility and needle-like keenness of the insect. A green patterned print adds a decorative complexity, and the steel and overall stature of the object — scaling up the insect significantly —suggests some kind of mutational or science-fiction-like evolution.
The heavily floral pattern on the porcelain carapace takes the sting out of the tail of ‘Scorpion’ slightly — the finely painted surface recalling Shu’s interest in combining a traditional royal class of Chinese ceramic design with the modern industrial design of chrome, and aligning favourably with such a striking and stately likeness, whose pose still manages to unsettle. Shu has spoken of aviation and machines of flight as an influence on his practice, how those entities convey a sense of motion even when stationary.