Caoshu by Chulan Kwak

Updated: Dec 8, 2019

Caoshu(known as Chinese cursive brush-writing) is the most abbreviated typeface in the calligraphy. The free flow of Caoshu in the white margins resembles the appearance of a dragon that seems to fly through the sky. Chulan Kwak, inspired by this movement, restructured the 2dimensional stroke of Caoshu, which seemed to run the blank space rhythmically, into the 3dimensional structure. Through the form of free curves, he has created ‘Cursive Structure’ that functions as well as creating a contrast between the object and margin of space that changes according to the viewpoint.

In order to realize this free curved form, Chulan Kwak applied the technique of paper craft to woodwork. He first created the form through 3D software and then unfolded it to extract the accurate drawing. He used this method to precisely cut thin and bendable plywood with a CNC machine and to adhere the edges of each parts correctly in order. Through the combination of the digital tool and craftsmanship, he was able to create the solid forms of free curves in the real world, such as those made in the virtual space. They were finished after dyeing with Muck (ink used for Chinese brush-writing) for the deep black color.

Caoshu is characterized by a breezy yet structured aura. So, he sought to create a spatial illusion that was structurally sturdy but deviated from the gravitational effects we feel.