Avanto 冰上游泳

Fred Dervin 文德

ICILABAS艺栈,798icilabas,icilabas,Beijing798icilabasThis painting has a companion titled My Element. Avanto means ice-swimming in Finnish. The piece shows two characters swimming in freezing cold water in a Finnish lake. They made a hole in a frozen lake and jumped into it together. This is a very common activity in the winter in the Nordic country. It is said to be good for one’s health and sense of happiness. In the painting we can see only half of the characters’ faces, which seem to express different emotions (use of different colours). In fact, it seems that the emotions are changing on their faces through the alternating colour shades and tones. Their eyes are closed as if they were mediating together in the (very) cold water. What are they thinking about? Only they can know. This is a very special moment that we can only share with those who are intimate with us.


BIODATA - 艺术家简介

A renowned scholar in the field of intercultural communication and education, Fred Dervin (Chinese name: 文德 Wende) is also an artist. He holds two PhDs (Sorbonne University in Paris and University of Turku, Finland), is a full professor and PhD supervisor at the University of Helsinki, Finland.  Dervin also holds several distinguished and visiting professorships in Australia, Canada, China, Luxembourg, Malaysia and Sweden, as well as in other Finnish universities. Dervin has published internationally on questions of identity, interculturality and mobility/migration (over 150 articles and 80 books). His interest in art began when he was a teenager and has continued to grow over the decades. Over the past decade, he has produced artworks in China and Finland to showcase his scientific ideas. His commitment to the arts has also influenced his personal research (e.g. the benefits of arts education for intercultural communication). For decades he has collected and specialized in Finnish art from the mid-20th century and since 2015 he has been actively involved in producing his own art in relation to his research work. In his 2022 book entitled Interculturality in Fragments: A Reflexive Approach (Springer), he included 10 of his works of art to stimulate his readers to think beyond words about intercultural communication and education. He is just about to publish a book on art and interculturality in education (Palgrave Macmillan, 2023).

Dervin is interested in the complexity of depicting faces in his art work by using different techniques. Interestingly, the Finnish word "face", "kasvot", always appears in the plural, which piqued his curiosity about the human face. This interest also comes from his scientific research on identity and intercultural communication, as well as his experience of living in different parts of the world.