news | CHENG RAN IN NOW YOU SEE

CHENG RAN, “The Sorrows of Young Werther”, 2009, Four channel video with sound, 10 min 12 sec

Now You See: New Chinese Video Art from the Collection of Dr. Michael I. Jacobs
Whitebox Art Center, New York, United States
May 25th through June 15th, 2014

“Now You See” is the first exhibition in New York to survey the work of young Chinese video artists, through the eyes of the collector Dr. Michael I. Jacobs, who has been collecting Chinese video art in depth since 2010.The exhibition, drawn from his collection, brings together 21 rarely seen works by 11 young artists, mostly born in the 1980s, and includes multi-screen projective installations, animations, single screen projections and monitor works.

Unlike the West, China has no tradition of video art. The works in this exhibition demonstrate a sophisticated approach to the medium that includes references to Western performance, video, body art, cinema, animation and conceptual art that has become visible in China in recent years, yet transforms them into a fresh new language of the moving image with an originality that is also informed by traditional Chinese art and cinema, as well as newly available information about Western art and culture from the internet.

The exhibition includes a triple screen projective installation by Cheng Ran, “The Sorrows of Young Werther” (2009), whose title is borrowed from a tragic love story about the highly sensitive young artist Werther, written by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe in 1774. The viewer is surrounded by a surreal, dreamlike sequence of images shot in a forest at night, accompanied by a haunting soundtrack of psychedelic music performed by a Chinese DJ. Cheng Ran’s work is influenced by Western filmmakers such as Steve McQueen and the atmospheric films of the Hungarian director Bela Tarr, as well as by the film work of Yang Fudong, and Chinese culture.

Four animation films by Sun Xun can be seen together for the first time. Trained in the printmaking department of the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou, he applies his graphic skill to the moving image, creating hand-drawn animations in a monochromatic palette of blue ink and oil paint that evoke both the work of William Kentridge and Chinese scroll painting. The story of the protagonist in each narrative unfolds in a collage of images evoking the magic of a fairy tale, through which a brooding sense of foreboding, and a questioning of the political and cultural future of the world is expressed.

In Li Ming’s video “Comb” (2008), a large mechanical digger repeatedly breaks a hole in the wall of an old building, through which a young woman can eventually be seen from the back, standing in the room beyond. The digger’s long arm slowly reaches out to the back of her head and awkwardly attempts to gently comb through her hair without touching it, in a robotic gesture that is touching in its apparent desire to connect with a human presence. Li Ming’s video addresses the recent destruction of old apartment buildings in cities all over China, and the vulnerability of the people whom these actions have displaced, in the name of a new modernity that bears little relation to the needs of those communities.

Liu Shiyuan trained both at the China Academy of Art and at the School of Visual Arts in New York. Her 2009 video “Evidence” addresses the uncertainty inherent in close relationships between people. Friends were invited to bring clothes that represented their identities to a studio whose walls were painted in different colors. Each person chose a number corresponding to each set of clothing, and wore the clothes that they had picked, acting out the behavior that they imagined to be associated with the owner of the clothes. The emotional exchanges that result reveal the underlying tensions that can occur in close friendships, using the framework of performance to express important issues in everyday life.

These and the other works in the exhibition demonstrate the powerful voice of a new generation of young Chinese artists who have formed an independent approach that has absorbed the newly available, if limited, access to international art and popular culture through the internet, and through the community of young artists that has formed around art schools in China and, in some cases, in American art schools which some have attended, but is neither derivative of, nor dependent on, Western culture. This important exhibition follows on from “Unfinished Country: New Video Art from China”, the first American museum show dedicated to contemporary Chinese video art, curated by James Elaine, at the Contemporary Art Museum in Houston, in collaboration with the Asia Society Texas Center. This exhibition includes four artists whose work was not included in that exhibition, and are being seen in America for the first time: Liu Shiyuan, Wang Xin, Liang Yue, and Kan Xuan.

Dr. Jacobs, an avid art collector with a passion for international contemporary art, made his first visit to China in October of 2010. Guiding himself, with an initial introduction to Zhang Peili and his former student, Wang Xin, he returned to China nine times to explore the little-known world of Chinese video art and to meet artists, curators, art critics, museum staff, and local art collectors. He began to focus his support of young artists on China after observing the high quality of the Chinese video work that he encountered during his visits. The result is a unique collection of Chinese video art that reflects the strength and breadth of contemporary moving image work in China. This collection is part of a larger collection of contemporary art that includes video by a range of international artists including Ryan Trecartin, Nathalie Djuberg, Korakrit Arunanondchai, Koki Tanaka, Matt Saunders, Trisha Baga, Robin Cameron, Mary Reid Kelley, Rasheed Newsome, Liz Magic Laser, amongst many others.

upcoming | TAUS MAKHACHEVA: SECOND WORLD, THIRD ATTEMPT

Taus Makhacheva:
Second World, Third Attempt

November 10th through December 23rd, 2017
Opening reception: Friday, November 10th, 6-8pm

past | SONGS FROM THE BIG CHAIRS

SONGS FROM THE BIG CHAIRS

September 30th through October 31st, 2017
Closed on National holidays, October 1st through 8th.

Participants: Bu Bing, Chen Wei, Cheng Ran, Michael Lin, Liu Chuang, Liu Shiyuan, Liu Yichun, Wang Yan, Zhang Ke and more.
 

offsite | A NEW BALLARDIAN VISION

CINDY SHERMAN, "Untitled", 1987

A NEW BALLARDIAN VISION
Organized by Leo Xu
June 29th through August 4th, 2017
Metro Pictures, New York, USA 
 
As a part of CONDO Complex New York, a gallery swap between New York galleries and national and international partners, Metro Pictures hosts Leo Xu’s two-part exhibition A New Ballardian Vision. The show brings together a selection of works that reflect recent social, technological and environmental developments through the lens of author J.G. Ballard’s (1930–2009) writings. Xu conceived the exhibition as two distinct chapters; the first features Metro Pictures artists Nina Beier, Camille Henrot, Martin Kippenberger, Oliver Laric, Robert Longo, Trevor Paglen, Jim Shaw and Cindy Sherman. The second chapter focuses on a younger generation of Chinese artists represented by Leo Xu Projects, including aaajiao, Chen Wei, Cheng Ran, Cui Jie, Li Qing, Liu Shiyuan and Pixy Liao.
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past | AAAJIAO: USER, LOVE, HIGH-FREQUENCY TRADING

aaajiao, Candy wrappers (twitter), 2017

AAAJIAO: USER, LOVE, HIGH-FREQUENCY TRADING

May 27th through July 22nd, 2017
Opening reception: Friday, May 26th, 6-8pm

“User, Love, High-frequency Trading” marks the second solo exhibition with the gallery by Shanghai and Berlin-based young new media artist aaajiao. Aaajiao, the artistic persona of Xu Wenkai, was first created as his internet handle. As a user of many websites, social media and applications, aaajiao has been exploring the notions about such role and new identities and personalities a user may assume through his or her operation of one specific medium. This two-year long research has crystalized into the exhibition “User, Love, High-frequency Trading”. It goes through multiple aspects—for instance, user’s alter ego, social media communication, and new economies driven by algorithms and networking of users—and arrives at a particular moment in current social and technological development, which has both resonated and contrasted with many of Sci-fi cinema and literature’s Ballardian or cyberpunk fantasies of an early 21st century.

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fair | LISTE – ART FAIR BASEL 2017

Booth: 1-7-G3
June 12th through 18th, 2017

The gallery’s debut in LISTE – Art Fair Basel 2017 will feature a solo presentation by Copenhagen-based young Chinese female artist Liu Shiyuan.

Born in 1985 in Beijing, Liu Shiyuan lives and works in Copenhagen after having studied in New York and Beijing. Traveling and living between cities and across multiple cultures, Liu has developed an artistic sensibility to the new forms of language and expressions on cybersphere and its ensuing patterns of everyday communication across the globe. The works on view at the booth also underlines the nuances and influences of the new internet rhetoric between different regions and media.

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past | PLEASE FASTEN YOUR SEAT BELT AS WE ARE EXPERIENCING SOME TURBULENCE

Please fasten your seat belt as we are experiencing some turbulence

March 18th through April 30th, 2017
Opening reception: Friday, March 17th, 6-8pm

David Kordansky Gallery and Leo Xu Projects are pleased to present “Please fasten your seat belt as we are experiencing some turbulence”, a collaborative group exhibition held at Leo Xu Projects, Lane 49, Building 3, Fuxing Xi Road, Xuhui District, Shanghai. The show will be on view from March 18 until April 30, 2017. An opening reception will take place on Friday, March 17 from 6:00pm until 8:00pm.

Featuring artists from both of the galleries’ programs, Please fasten your seat belt as we are experiencing some turbulence will examine how a wide and heterogeneous array of aesthetic positions can reflect, refract, and bear witness to an uncertain state of global affairs. The exhibition will include work by Kathryn Andrews, Andrea Büttner, Chen Wei, Heman Chong, Sam Gilliam, Zach Harris, Evan Holloway, Rashid Johnson, Gabriel Lester, Li Qing, Liu Shiyuan, Pixy Liao, Jonas Lund, Tala Madani, Chris Martin, Torbjørn Rødland, Sissel Tolaas, Tom of Finland, Wei Jia, Ming Wong, and Betty Woodman.

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news | CHEN WEI: THE CLUB AT HORSHAM REGIONAL ART GALLERY

Chen Wei, "Disco #1004", 2015

CHEN WEI: The Club
Horsham Regional Art Gallery, Horsham, Australia
24 June 2017 - 13 August 2017

Chen Wei’s solo exhibition “The Club” is to open on June 24, 2017 and runs until August 13, 2017 at Horsham Regional Art Gallery.

Being one of China’s leading artists exhibiting in London, New York, Melbourne and numerous cities across Europe, Chen Wei is presenting photographs and installations that fabricate a visual archive of Chinese club culture in Horsham, Australia. Curated by Elias Redstone, The Club explores an undocumented subculture, reflecting on wider social changes that have taken place in modern China.

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news | LIU SHIYUAN IN .COM/.CN AT K11

Group Exhibition: .com/.cn
K11 Art Foundation, Hong Kong 
21 March through 30 April 2017

Liu Shiyuan is selected to be included in the group exhibition .com/.cn, co-presented by the K11 Art Foundation and MoMA PS1. Co-curated by Klaus Biesenbach and Peter Eleey of MoMA PS1 in New York, this project is part of an ongoing research partnership of two institutions.

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fair | FRIEZE NEW YORK 2017

Li Qing, "Window · The Sea in the Museum", 2016-2017

Frieze New York
Booth B23
Randall’s Island, Manhattan
May 5th through 7th, 2017
Preview: Thursday, May 4th, 2017

Located at booth B23, the gallery will be exhibiting a solo presentation of Shanghai-based artist Li Qing, who was recently shortlisted for the sixth edition of Prix Jean-Francois Prat (2017), a prestigious international contemporary art prize mainly focuses on painting.
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news | AAAJIAO IN BODY MEDIA II AT PSA

Group Exhibition: Body·Media II
Power Station of Art, Shanghai, China
April 29 through July 30, 2017

 

Artist aaajiao is selected along with other 23 artists/art groups from 12 countries to be included in the group exhibition “Body·Media II” at Power Station of Art, Shanghai,  co-curated by Gong Yan (China) and Richard Castelli (France). The exhibition continues the theme of 2007’s exhibition Body Media, re-discusses the close ties between new media and body within the new era context totally revolutionized by advancing technologies. It contains installation, performance, photography, video, and other hard-to-be-defined art forms, introduces cross-disciplinary cooperative patterns and exceeds boundaries of interactive art exhibitions.

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news | PIXY LIAO IN NSFW: FEMALE GAZE AT MUSEUM OF SEX

 

NSFW: Female Gaze
June 21, 2017
Museum of Sex, New York, USA

Pixy Liao is participating in the group exhibition “NSFW: Female Gaze” at Museum of Sex on June 21.

NSFW: Female Gaze, co-curated by VICE Media’s Creators, showcases over 25 emerging female artists from various disciplines dedicated to powerful feminine narratives. From Instagram and GIF platforms to textile and photography, these artists bring a fresh, eclectic, and unconventional approach to sexuality.

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news | LIU CHUANG IN CHINESE SUMMER AT ASTRUP FEARNLEY MUSEET

Chinese Summer 
02 June 2017 – 10 September 2017
Astrup Fearnley Museet, Oslo, Norway
 

Liu Chuang is selected to be included in the group exhibition “Chinese Summer” in Astrup Fearnley Museet, curated by Gunnar B. Kvaran and Therese Möllenhoff.  The name Chinese Summeris a metaphor for the nation and art scene that have seen explosive growth over the last two decades.

Acknowledging the importance of cultural and artistic production in China that has taken its position on the global stage, Astrup Fearnley Museet is presenting 2 generations of artists in the large group exhibition of Chinese contemporary art.

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news | AAAJIAO, CHENG RAN, LI QING IN MOCA PAVILLION


Group exhibition: All happens after sunset…
MOCA Pavilion, Shanghai, China
April 22nd through May 25th, 2017

Artists aaajiao, Cheng Ran and Li Qing participate the group exhibition “All happens after sunset” at MOCA Pavilion, Shanghai, curated by Xⁿ Office, a contemporary art curating group launched by researcher of art history Penny Xu and artist Ni Youyu. The exhibition is also part of the first phase of MOCA’s 2017 “+Follow+” young artist group exhibition project, to follow young Chinese artists in their development, observing them as they mold through their early stages and blossom into maturity.

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fair | ART BASEL HONG KONG 2017

 
Art Basel Hong Kong
Stand C20
Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Center
March 23rd through 25th, 2017
Preview Wednesday, March 22nd
 


news | AAAJIAO IN HEART OF A TIN MAN

aaajiao, “Email Trek”, 2016  
Group Exhibition: Heart of the Tin Man
June 20th through October 8th
M Woods Art Museum, D-06, 798 Art Zone
Beijing, China

Artist aaajiao is selected along with other 11 artists to be included in the group exhibition “Heart of the Tin Man” in M Woods Museum, Beijing, dedicated to the digital age. Heart of the Tin Man brings together works consciously revealing, investigating or subverting current Internet or technological practices. Drawn predominantly from the M WOODS Collection and the post-internet focus of co-founder Michael Xufu Huang, the exhibition includes virtual reality, digital mechanics, and interactive works to stimulate our senses of sight, smell, touch, and sound, and to register emotion within a contemporary world increasingly governed by algorithms, measurements, and marketing.

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news | AAAJIAO IN UNREAL. THE ALGORITHMIC PRESENT AT HEK

aaajiao,"Limited Landscape, Unlimited Floating", 2017

Group Exhibition: unREAL. The Algorithmic Present
Haus der elektronischen Künste, Basel, Switzerland
08 June through 20 August 2017 
 
 
Aaajiao is selected to be included in the group exhibition unREAL. The Algorithmic Present in House of Electronic Arts Basel. 
 
unREAL examines the complexity of our digital age, it is an exhibition that attempts to confront the digital present through the very means of technological intervention both as critical examination as well as alternative prospects. The twenty-four works in the exhibition by international artists underscore the often-hidden materiality of bits and bytes, bringing to the fore the algorithmic processes that constitute our digital present.

news | CITY OF STARS

 

Leo Xu Projects and Art Project CZ co-presents
Group Exhibition: City of Stars
April 19th through June 19th, 2017
MINGO
No. 1690 Huaihai Road, Xuhui District, Shanghai

 

The collaborative group exhibition “City of Stars” between Leo Xu Projects and Art Project CZ runs from April 19th to June 19th, 2017. The exhibition aims to capture the nightlife and living experience in the former French concession area in Shanghai, and to project a broader encapsulation of the Chinese youth’s status quo. Artists on view include aaajiao, Chen Wei, Cheng Ran, Guo Hongwei, Li Qing and Liu Shiyuan.

 

news | AAAJIAO AND LIU CHUANG IN SHANGHAI PROJECT CHAPTER 2

Shanghai Project Chapter 2
Envision 2116
Exhibition: “Seeds of Time”
April 22 – July 30, 2017

Venues: Shanghai Himalayas Museum, Envision Pavilion, Zendai Zhujiajiao Art Museum

 

Artists aaajiao and Liu Chuang are invited by Shanghai Project to participate in the exhibition’s second chapter as researchers. Curated by Yongwoo Lee and Hans Ulrich Obrist, the Shanghai Project Chapter 2 exhibition ”Seeds of Time” will be inaugurated on April 22, 2017. Taking its title from the documentary of the same name, which shares the project’s call for action regarding the climate situation, the exhibition seeks to explore sustainability so as to better understand possible solutions for urgent environmental and social problems.

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news | PIXY LIAO: LADY AND GENTLEMAN AT GALLERI VASLI SOUZA

PIXY LIAO, "Family sushi", 2011

Lady and Gentleman
24 March – 22 April 2017
Galleri Vasli Souza, Malmö, Sweden
 

Pixy Liao’s solo show “Lady and Gentleman” is running at Galleri Vasli Souza, Malmö, Sweden from 24th of March through 22nd of April 2017.

Having studied photography at University of Memphis and lived in the States for over a decade, Liao is highly influenced by the style of New American Color Photography in her practices.

Lady and Gentleman showcases the alternative possibilities of heterosexual relationships and inscribe how a man and a woman can exchange their roles and question the whole concept of “normal relationships”.

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news | CUI JIE IN PAST SKIN AT MoMA PS1

CUI JIE, S House #5, 2016

Past Skin
April 6 – September 10, 2017
MoMA PS1
22-25 Jackson Avenue, Queens
Long Island City, NY 11101

Cui Jie will participate in the group exhibition “Past Skin” at MoMA PS1, New York, running from April 6 to September 10, 2017. In today’s technological environment, we can style, extend, and broadcast ourselves at will, projecting into digital realms that in turn shape us. The six artists in ”Past Skin” take up science historian and cyber-feminist Donna Haraway’s provocation, “Why should our body end at the skin?,” testing the growing porosity between our bodies and habitats in a contemporary world where virtuality is ubiquitous and surreality is increasingly normalized. As much as we exert influence on our bodies and surroundings, the technologies that enable this influence also influence us. Details »