Flat cocoons have diverse textures, with different depths of folds, or spots of herpes, just like the bare skin of human beings. Some also resemble medical CT images of the skin under the microscope. Skin is the first line of defense of our body, the protection wall of human organs, the witness of existence and the diagnostic instrument of ecology. There stores the frozen age and the vicissitudes of history in series of wrinkles and folds. It is the entanglement of life and death, the distance between heaven and hell, where the fervour, hope, greatness and misery are all mixed into an indistinguishable gleam. The feeling as if being cut off from the outside world for ages comes together with the feeling of rebirth, leaving deep yet secret marks on the cocoon’s surface. A straw shows which way the wind blows. From the outside to the inside, when life is externalized, the poetic (shi, homophone to “silk” in Chinese) meaning also resides on the surface. When criticizing the paintings of Francis Bacon, Gilles Deleuze quoted the seemingly paradox sentence from Paul Valéry - “The deepest part of the human being is the skin.” Isn’t it a flat cocoon?
January 5, 2020, Tiantai