‘Fragile Lines’ is a research output by Dr Peipei Yu consisting of a large scale (7m x 2.8m) wall installation of 112 glazed porcelain tiles. Together the glazed tiles present an abstracted world map based on digital layering and manipulation of different cartographic representations of the world.
The source maps used in the research were different projections from various periods of history put together in such a way as to become unrecognisable and indecipherable. The finished image is intended to refer to the history of abstract modernist painting and the forms of abstraction used in cartography and decorative ceramics. The arrangement of the tiles also creates a grid which refers to the use of the grid in abstract modernism, maps and decorative tiles. At the same time the material (porcelain) refers to the literal referent of maps – that is the surface of the earth. The tiles were produced by Peipei in a ceramics factory in Jingdezhen, which is China’s oldest and largest producer of porcelain ceramics.
The finished piece, although a stand alone work, was initially developed to be exhibited at Today Art Museum Beijing in dialogue with Professor Bashir Makhoul’s floor installation ‘Fata Morgana’ which was also made from glazed ceramics.