大哉問?!

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1993 / 2月

文‧蕭容慧



卅年前,前故宮博物院副院長李霖燦護送一批國寶至美國展出。一位觀眾在宋花鳥畫家李安忠的「竹鳩圖」前流連了近二個小時,終於鼓起勇氣,邀李到家中作客,並稱有事相商。李先生不明所以,但仍忐忑赴約。

到了他家,只見一個大籠子中的兩隻鳥兒,與李安忠的畫中竹鳩竟一模一樣。這位外國朋友洋洋得意:「你們說,你們那張畫是照著我的鳥來畫的呢?還是我的鳥照著你們的畫長的?」三人相視莞爾。

時間再向前推。根據唐代畫史記載,北齊有位畫家劉殺鬼,曾在壁間畫上鬥雀。文宣帝初見,誤為真鳥,用手揮趕不去,才明白原來是畫。

由此看來,一向被誤認為細膩繁複卻欠缺真實感的中國花鳥畫,並不全然失真。而一般以為近代圖繪野生鳥類的風氣始於西方的說法,其實可以再議(見七十四頁)。

前東海大學美術系主任蔣勳指出,過去他總認為中國畫家只寫胸中意氣,事實上是很大的誤解。

禮記大學有云:「致知在格物。」所謂「格物」,即是窮至事物之理。而在理學盛行的宋代,畫家尤其服膺格物窮理的原則,作畫時不但觀察物體的結構,也細細分解它們的肌裡。今天如果將花鳥畫中的鳥類與真鳥相對照,今人除了讚嘆古人作畫態度之嚴謹,寫實技巧之高超,還能對眾人皆視西方為鳥類生態畫作起源的論點,提出顛覆的說法。

但從另一方面來看,中國古人「民胞物與」、從未排斥自然生命的哲學觀,在今日卻逐漸走樣。前有我國商人助長南非獵殺海狗之風波,後有犀牛、黑面琵鷺濫殺事件,在在向中國傳統的人生哲學挑戰。

在人人往前看的時代潮流中,什麼是我們應該捨棄的?什麼是我們值得留存的?

另一種「寫真」,當屬攝影。自一百五十多年前西方發明攝影術以來,這種高明的科技挾帶西方的強勢文化,橫掃世界。而「剎那即是永恆」的照片,也為人類歷史的溯源工作,留下強而有力的證據。

誠如攝影家簡永彬所說:「攝影術帶有其與生俱來的平民、大眾化性格,它能滿足各時代,都會文化在轉型期中,一種視覺符號的『定著』。而這些影像就是本土文化最基礎的資產。」攝影術,的確已成為人類共有的一種情感媒介,它也可以說是所有文化工作者共有的珍貴財產。

如果來看我們對老照片保存的狀況,又有何發現?台灣攝影文化的發展,應以日據時期的營業寫真館(今天的照相館)為源頭。當年一批本土或留日的畫像、攝影者,所開設寫真館或攝影材料屋,成為一群愛好攝影人士的聚會所,也成為台灣業餘攝影家的濫觴。

然而,當年專業或業餘的作品——富本土情懷的老照片,已隨作者老成凋零,有些在老宅翻新時被丟棄,有些在搬家時出清……。在無殼蝸牛高呼買不起住屋的現代,佔空間的舊物成為累贅,老照片不幸也在其中。

日據時代末、台灣光復初經營寫真館至今的女性攝影陳麗鴻(見廿四頁),對找不到當年的得意作品頗感遺憾。她表示,由於是營業性質,並沒有特別收藏開業卅年之間的照片。隨著舊店面的翻修、搬家,很多老照片已不知去向……。

玉山國家公園管理處曾搜羅玉山的老照片,編成一冊「玉山回首」。老照片不但使玉山的舊貌重現,也對現在的生態研究有極大助益,可以藉此觀察林相的變遷與消長。一位多年前經營照相館的攝影者,歿後將家業及其作品傳給兒子。當其子得知有人在蒐集老照片時,表示不願出借,但願意賣斷,開價每張三萬元,而且只要價錢合適,願意出讓父親遺留的老相機!

也就是這些因素,使得台灣近百年的攝影歷史有所殘缺。如何搶救老照片,恐怕不只是攝影工作者,也是有識之士的責任吧!

一八七二年,美國政府正式設立黃石國家公園。它是當時美國第一也是世界第一座國家公園。由於它的經營成功,喚起人們尊重自然及維護生態的觀念,才使世界其他國家紛紛跟進。國家公園是先進國家推動文化資源保育的一種文明指標,迄今全球約有百餘國或地區,設置將近千處的國家公園。

台灣地區早在民國廿六年,即由日據時代的「台灣總督府」,選定三處國家公園預定地,分別是今天的玉山、阿里山,太魯閣、合歡山,及大屯、七星、觀音山等三處。真正付諸行動則在民國七十二年——墾丁公園成為我國第一座國家公園。

就在一月六日,我國玉山國家公園起火燃燒,短短六個晝夜中,一百一十五公頃的林地化為灰燼(見一一二頁)。損失無法用金錢衡量。

事後檢討,有關單位皆承認「巧婦難為無米之炊」。滅火設備、器材皆停留在六十年代人工打火方式,而空中直升機、滅火彈及現代滅火設備皆不全,怎能有效地運作?

至於大火起因,眾說紛紜,而箭頭則多半指向人為因素。

近廿年來,已有價值超過新台幣三億四千萬的森林材積在大火中付之一炬。殷鑑並沒有帶來警惕,山丘只能無言。

十年樹木,百年才能成林,對於這些難得的資源,究竟有沒有保護維持的方法或是降低損失的計策?

在資源分配的大餅中,又有多少被規劃到林木的永續或保持?國家公園「為子子孫孫留下美的樂土」的標的,怎樣才不致成為海市蜃樓?

或者,只是個既簡單又複雜的問題:如何改變人類的態度?!

相關文章

近期文章

EN

Big Questions

Sunny Hsiao /tr. by Jonathan Barnard


Thirty years ago Li Lin-tsan, then deputy director of the National Palace Museum, escorted a collection of national treasures to America for an exhibition. There, one member of the public stood for two hours in front of "Bamboo Pigeons" by Li An-chung, the Sung dynasty painter, before gathering the courage to invite Li Lin-tsan home, saying he wanted to show him something. Taken aback, Li apprehensively accepted.

Once there, Li saw just a cage holding two birds identical to the ones in Li An-chung's painting. " You tell me," this foreign friend asked, " Did the artist paint based on my birds, or did the birds grow based on your painting?"

Further back in time, a Northern Chi dynasty artist is said to have painted a pair of sparrows fighting that looked so real the Emperor Wen Hsuan once tried waving them away.

So much for the idea that Chinese paintings of birds aren't realistic. And those who think that the modern style of painting wild birds started in the West, can also think again. (See page 74.)

In the Book of Rites, it is written that "To obtain knowledge, you've got to study the nature of things." And in the Sung dynasty, a high-water mark for empiricism in China, painters stuck to the principle of getting to the bottom of things. When painting they not only observed the physical structure of an animal but also came to a detailed understanding of its anatomy. Comparing the birds in their paintings to actual bird species not only leads one to praise the disciplined attitude of the ancient artists and their ability to paint realistically but also provides evidence to counter the commonly held notion that the painting of birds in their native ecologies has its roots in the West.

But from another angle, whereas the ancient chinese held onto a principle of "loving animals and nature," today we are slowly going down a road of having cast nature aside. Not so long ago, R.O.C. business-men were involved in the killing of seals in South Africa, which was followed by the rhino horn incident and the reckless killing of the black-faced spoonbill. These incidents have challenged the humane philosophy Chinese have traditionally held dear. What should we cast off? And what is worth preserving?

Another art that captures images "true to life" is, of course, photography. Since photography was invented in the West 150 years ago, this technology-cum-art has caught on around the world. And photography, which "preserves the moment for eternity," is also important for recording history.

As photographer Chien Yung-pin says, "From its birth, photography has been characterized by its links to the masses. It can meet the needs of any age, serving as a kind of visual symbolic 'freezing' of cultures in the midst of transformation. Furthermore, these photographs are the most basic resource of local culture."

Taiwan's photography has its roots in the portrait studios of the Japanese era, which provided work for the island's first generation of photographers, many of whom had trained in Japan.

Like so many other senior photographers, Chen Li-hung, who has run her photo studio since the end of the Japanese occupation (see page 24), longs for many of her favorite photos, which were lost during moving or remodeling. . . .

The management office of the Yushan National Park has published a collection of old photographs of the park in a book entitled Jade Mountain: Back to the Beginning. The book not only provides glimpses onto how the park used to look, but is also of much help in current ecological research. From it, one can chart the changes to the forest, its advances and retreats. One photographer, who ran a photo studio for many years, left his family business to his son after he died. When the son found out that people were collecting old photographs of Jade Mountain, he was happily willing to part with them--but only at NT$30,000 a shot. If the price was right, he was even willing to part with his father's old camera.

And for these reasons, there is a lack of photographs documenting the last 100 years of history in Taiwan. Responsibility lies not only with photographers but with all those who are concerned about this issue.

In 1872 the American government established Yellowstone National Park, the world's first national park. Its success helped promote ecological conservation and respect for nature and caused other nations to follow suit.

Today national parks have become a yardstick to measure the degree of a country's advancement, and close to 1000 such parks have been established in over 100 countries or territories around the world.

The first plan for national parks in Taiwan was hatched during the era of the Japanese occupation in 1937. The Taiwan governor's office selected three areas: Jade Mountain and Mt. Ali; Taroko Gorge and Mt. Hehuan; and the area around Mt. Tatun, Mt. Chihsing and Mt. Kua-nyin. But Kenting National Park was the first actually established in 1983.

On January 6, a fire raged in the R.O.C.'s Yushan National Park, burning 125 hectares of forest in just six days and six nights and causing incalculable damage. (See page 112.) Investigations pointed toward man as the source and faulted outdated fire-fighting equipment for allowing the fire to go on as long as it did. How can we make the goal of our national parks to preserve the forests for future generations more than just a mirage? Or to put it another way: How do we go about changing people's attitudes?

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