Jianping He was among forty Asian designers invited by the Taiwanese calligrapher Tong Yang-Tze to collaborate on a group of twenty-four works of calligraphy focusing on the subject of “imitating nature.” The theme, which had long been a driving influence in the tradition of Chinese painting and calligraphy, also reminded He of a quote by Albert Einstein: “Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” Working with Yang-Tze, He designed a poster that features a single Chinese character transformed into a unified whole through a web of thin lines extruding from the edges of the calligraphic element. He built-up a network of thin lines that connect the different ends of the character’s lines, transforming the flat design into a shape with a three-dimensional appearance.  The poster was designed for the Asian Culture and Arts Development Alliance.

Caitlin Condell is the Assistant Curator in the Department of Drawings, Prints & Graphic Design at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.

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