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Oct 2019

Notes from Pallet Town

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From September 22, 2019 to February 23, 2020, UCCA Dune presents “Notes from Pallet Town,” showing work from Leelee Chan (b. 1984, Hong Kong), Guo Cheng (b. 1988, Beijing), and the artist duo of Jingfang Hao (b. 1985, Shandong province) and Lingjie Wang (b. 1984, Shanghai). The “Pallet Town” of the title refers to the hometown of the protagonist of a 1990s Japanese video game and anime series. In a certain sense, the built environment in China is close to achieving the futuristic, idyllic sheen found in the background of such cartoons, yet the deeper implications and potential by-products of such a perfect image warrant further exploration. In “Notes from Pallet Town” participating artists deliver reports from imagined utopias, asking viewers to re-imagine the structures underpinning contemporary life. Their work foregrounds technology, but pointedly uses it as a means to highlight natural phenomena or illusions, revealing moments of unexpected beauty. “Notes from Pallet Town” is specifically curated in dialogue with the unique architecture and setting of UCCA Dune, designed by Li Hu and Huang Wenjing of OPEN Architecture, nestled in the sand by the Bohai Sea in the Aranya Gold Coast Community, 300 kilometers from Beijing. Continuing UCCA Dune’s curatorial focus on art examining the relationship between the human and natural worlds, the exhibition is curated by UCCA Head of Exhibitions Guo Xi.

The media franchise that the original Pallet Town appears in is in fact Pokémon. However, the exhibition is not directly concerned with the narrative of the Pokémon universe, rather taking the fictional town as a jumping-off point: all born after 1980, the participating artists came of age at a time when Japanese imports helped define the cultural imaginary of Greater China, with Pallet Town representing a particular dream image of contemporary East Asia. In the quietly prosperous community, society, technology, the natural world, and even the supernatural exist in harmony, while the white walls of tidy houses present a tabula rasa for fresh beginnings. Incidentally, Pallet Town was based on the real life city of Shimoda, which played an important role in the opening of Japan to foreign influence and technology in the 1850s. This small fictional town at the center of a generation’s memories proves surprisingly dense with meaning, not only presenting an image of utopia, but also implicitly evoking concepts underpinning the history of Asian modernization, such as the necessity of technological progress for development.

As sites of previously unmatched prosperity, where technology has smoothed out the rough edges of daily life, the metropolises where the participating artists live and work actively reach towards utopia. Yet such conditions have also led to new anxieties over environmental degradation, inequality, and the place of humanity in the face of automation and artificial intelligence. Pallet Town’s suburban fusion of society and nature also remains unrealized. The artists here have used—and intentionally misused—contemporary technology to celebrate the joys of sensation available in the present moment, while also expressing a certain sense of disquiet over issues that remain unresolved.

Jingfang Hao and Lingjie Wang create installations that reconstruct natural processes, uncannily mechanizing phenomena defined by imperfections and chance. On the beach outside the museum they use glass microspheres and an air compressor to create a rainbow, turning a serendipitous event into a regular occurrence. Like the lawns and fountains of a manicured park, this and other installations both soothe and illustrate a lack—what missing element necessitates these simulations?

Leelee Chan’s work is built out of the city: she takes as her materials consumer technology and discarded goods, found in part in the neighborhood around her Hong Kong studio. Polystyrene packaging, construction lights, a wind shield, wooden pallets, mother of pearl tiles, cosmetics containers and more are assembled into sculptures and installations that uncannily mimic nature, whether staging an artificial sunset, or carefully framing a single seashell to suggest the remains of a larger, unknown sea creature. Chan illustrates what materials fall through the cracks—even in developed, efficient cities—and then positions these objects as protagonists in their own right. In doing so, she investigates what traces urban life may leave in the distant future.

Guo Cheng also explores how our current lifestyles may shape the future, while customizing devices and software in a manner benefitting his background in industrial and product design. In The (Temporary) Gadget he arranges Geiger counter radiation detectors and custom circuits on spindly stems, recalling insects poised on branches. There they await the decline of global radiation to its level prior to atomic weapons testing. Other works encase everyday objects in concrete to create artificial fossils, or reproduce the artist’s face through 3D prints, massively distorted by neural network processing. Guo reminds the viewers that our attempts to create a controlled environment may have unforeseen effects, reshaping the earth, or even our own humanity.

Whether recreating natural beauty, or capturing the poetry of a high-tech device in operation, the works in the exhibition on the one hand embody the mixture of optimism and nostalgia that Pallet Town symbolically encapsulates. Yet in their observations of contemporary conditions, the participating artists also ask if we may ever truly reach this supposed utopia, and if so, what we may lose along the way.

About UCCA Dune

UCCA Dune is an art museum buried under a sand dune by the Bohai Sea in Beidaihe, 300 kilometers east of Beijing. Designed by OPEN Architecture, its galleries unfold over a series of cell-like spaces that evoke caves. Some are naturally lit from above, while others open out onto the beach. As a branch of UCCA, China’s leading independent institution of contemporary art, it presents rotating exhibitions in dialogue with its particular site and space. UCCA Dune is built and supported by UCCA strategic partner Aranya, and located within the Aranya Gold Coast Community.

www.ucca.org.cn/en

About the Artists

Leelee Chan

Leelee Chan (b. 1984, Hong Kong) received her MFA in painting from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2009 and her BFA from the School of Art Institute of Chicago in 2006. She currently lives and works in Hong Kong. Her work has been exhibited internationally including at Tai Kwun Contemporary, Hong Kong (2019); Capsule Shanghai Gallery, Shanghai (2019); Mine Project, Hong Kong (2019); Parallel Art Space, New York (2013); Flux Factory, New York (2011); Tompkins, New York (2010); Horse Trader Gallery, New York (2009); Sol Koffler Gallery, Providence, USA (2008); and The Three Season Gallery, Chicago (2006).

Guo Cheng

Guo Cheng (b. 1988, Beijing) is an artist currently based in Shanghai. He graduated from MA Design Products at Royal College of Art (London, UK) and obtained his Bachelor in Engineering in Industrial Design at Tongji University (Shanghai, China). His practice mainly focuses on exploring the interrelation between mainstream/emerging technologies, and individuals under the context of culture and social life. His work has been exhibited in “Machines Are Not Alone: A Machinic Trilogy” (Chronus Art Center, Shanghai, 2018); “The Ecstasy of Time” (He Xiangning Art Museum, Shenzhen, 2017); “Festival GAMERZ 11” (Aix-en-Provence, France, 2015); “The Ballad of Generation Y” (OCAT Shanghai, 2015); “Imaginary Body Boundary” (Digital Art Center, Taipei, 2015); STRP Biennial (Eindhoven, 2013) and elsewhere. He won the Special Jury Prize of the Huayu Youth Award (Sanya, 2018), and is a winner of the BAD award (the Netherlands, 2017). His work An Apophanous Overfitting (as a part of the collective project Tulip Pyramid – A Project of Copy and Identity) won the Gijs Bakker Award (the Netherlands, 2016). Guo Cheng has worked as Executive Director at Chronus Art Center, visiting researcher at the Department Environment & Health, Vrije University (Amsterdam) and has been serving as visiting lecturer at the College of Design and Innovation, Tongji University (Shanghai) since 2013.

Jingfang Hao & Lingjie Wang

Jingfang Hao (b. 1985, Shandong) & Lingjie Wang (b. 1984,Shanghai) are an artist duo. They both obtained Bachelors of Engineering in Shanghai Maritime University in 2007 and later received a Master’s degree in art from École Supérieure d’Art de Lorraine in France and a Diplôme national supérieur d’expression plastique (DNSEP). Now they reside in Mulhouse (France) and Shanghai. The two artists’ creative practice focuses on subtle changes in nature and our perception, with their main media including installations and images. By using the principles of material science and engineering, the works present an exploration of the relationship between cognition, emotion and nature, and convey a metaphysical reflection of intertwined rationality and sensibility. Their dual professional background in art and engineering effectively promotes their exploration of the ultimate commonality between the material and the spiritual world.

Their recent exhibitions include “Transmergence #01” (FRAC Alsace, France, 2019); 14th Lyon Biennale: Floating Worlds (Lyon, France, 2017); “Rolling Snowball” (AMNUA, Nanjing, China, 2018); “Mountain Water River Lake” (Art Museum of Sichuan Fine Arts Institute, Chongqing, China, 2018); “L’Atlas des nuages” (Fondation Françóis Schneider, Wattwiller, France, 2018); 62e Salon de Montrouge (le Be­roi, Montrouge, France, 2017); “Zone d’Influences” (FRAC Alsace, CEAAC, Strasbourg, France, 2018); Némo, Biennale Internationale d’Art Numérique (Centquatre, Paris, France, 2017); and “Die zweite Natur” (La Regionale 17, HeK Basel, Basel, Swizerland, 2016).

Sep 2019

Shanghai Urban Space Art Season

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Shanghai is a city born by and of waters. Its twin mothers, Huangpu River and Suzhou Creek, have witnessed how Shanghai evolved from a small fishing village to a modern metropolitan in the course of a century, and how a modern industrial and business world has developed here. The banks of Huangpu River used to be a forest of plants, wharfs and warehouses, and for a long time the Bund was the only section along the river with intimate terms with people while wherever else the tides were overwhelmed by the steam whistling.Thanks to the EXPO 2010,the functions of Huangpu banks began to change, which marked a new stage of Shanghai urban development characterized by increasingly emphasis on urban qualities and determined responses to the citizens’ prospect of lovely life with beautiful spaces.In December 2017, by virtue of the significant arrangements made by Shanghai Municipal Committee of CPC and Shanghai Municipal People’s Government as well as the continuing efforts of all involved units, the 45km Huangpu Waterfront Connection, a great feat of public space and one of the most important results of recent urban renewal in Shanghai, was completed. The project offers scenic activity spaces for the citizens and adds a brilliant chapter to the global history of city construction with its deep humane concerns.At 31 January 2019, Shanghai Municipal People’s Government introduced the “Guiding Opinions on Promoting the Planning and Constructions Along Huangpu River and Suzhou Creek” and officially approved the “Construction Plan Along the Banks of Huangpu River (2018-2035)” and “Construction Plan Along the Banks of Suzhou Creek (2018-2035)”. These programmatic documents further confirm the target of Huangpu River banks as a concentrated exhibition area for the developmental capacity level of a global city, and Suzhou Creek banks as a typical demonstration area for a livable megacity.With summarizing the achievements in constructing public spaces along the Huangpu River and the Suzhou Creek and visioning the marvelous future of the River and the Creek from a macro perspective, the theme of SUSAS 2019, which begins at the end of September, is thus determined. SUSAS 2019 invites people to personally feel the Huangpu River Connection as a public space by implanting art into spaces and to discuss the global issue “how waterfronts bring wonderful life to people” at the forum created by incorporating exhibitions with practices.The theme of main exhibition, as proposed by the chief curator, is Encounter for encounters of people,, water and bank, art and urban spaces, history and future which in turn incite more beautiful life and emotional encounters and create inerasable city memories at the 70th Anniversary of the People’s Republic of China. Li Qiang, Municipal Party Secretary of Shanghai, pointed out that the banks of Huangpu River should be the city’s parlor. Now that the parlor is completed, SUSAS 2019 is inviting the world to encounter Shanghai.
The 15.5km of Yangpu Waterfront along the Huangpu River, with its abundance of industrial heritages, is a century-long record of the development of Shanghai as an industrial city and the contributions which the working class of Shanghai have made to the New China. While the plants and warehouses along the southern part of Yangpu Waterfront (south of Yangshupu Road, north of Huangpu River, east of Qinghuangdao Ferry Terminal, west of Dinghai Bridge; 5.5km in length) are removed, an area of 1.8km2 in the city center is now available for repurposing. In the “Construction Plan Along the Banks of Huangpu River (2018-2035)”, the Yangpu Waterfront, designated for technology and innovations, is one of the key transforming areas after Shanghai enters the stage of urban renewal. The District Committee of CPC and People’s Government of Yangpu, which are paying great attention to innovative development modes of Yangpu Waterfront, have offered the public spaces and historical buildings along the southern part of Yangpu Waterfront (5.5km) to collaborate with SUSAS this year to invigorate this area with the charms of art. This critical measure makes possible a significant breakthrough on the part of SUSAS, which will for the first time hold its exhibition outdoors. In this way, the vision of incorporating public art works into public spaces themselves is realized.The venue of SUSAS 2019 Main Exhibition is the historical site of Shanghai Shipyard, including the dock and the Maoma (linen and wool) warehouse, while the outdoors public art works will be arranged along the 5.5km of waterfront public space from Qinhuangdao Ferry Terminal to Shanghai Fashion Center.While the public space west of Yangpu Bridge (2.8km) has been connected and opened, its eastern counterpart of 2.7km will be opened in September, at the same time with SUSAS. A number of industrial heritages are successively renovated, some of which restored to their historical appearances. What’s more, a series of functional projects are in orderly progress.The main exhibition will demonstrate the stories and topics of waterfront spaces in two sections: “Urban Space Art” and “Planning & Architecture”.The main exhibition’s chief curator is Fram Kitagawa, an internationally renowned artist and curator who has long been dedicated to boosting regional economy with art. The Urban Space Art section, headed by Fram Kitagawa and assisted by Yoshiyuki Kawazoe ,professor of the University of Tokyo, will be an artistic anchor along the 5.5km of Waterfront Yangpu, with its twenty or so permanent installments as on-site productions of international artists with respect to local history, character and vision. Meanwhile, to motivate artists interested in urban public art to participate, SUSAS 2019 has initiated an international call-for-work for five slots of public art, and the outstanding pieces have the opportunities to be permanent installments at the Yangpu Waterfront. For more information, please check our official website (http://www.susas.com.cn) or our WeChat prescription account .The curator of Planning and Architecture is Ruan Xing, Dean of School of Design, Shanghai Jiaotong University. This section will vividly demonstrate the concepts of waterfront planning in China and beyond as well as the achievements and prospect of construction projects along Huangpu River and Suzhou Creek. Besides an intellectually interesting show, it is intended to encourage deliberated thinking and contribute to a general consensus about the aims of waterfront development. Prof. Ruan has great knowledge of architectural theories and experiences in both teaching and site projects. He used to be Director of Architecture, Built Environment UNSW Sydney and a curator of the Venice Biennale of Architecture with theme “Waterfront Spaces”.The chief architect of SUSAS 2019 is Zhang Ming, the Vice Head of Department of Architecture, College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tongji University. He is responsible for the overall architectural design of the reutilized Dock which is an essential exhibited item and the venue design with other architects involved in designing or constructing the public spaces of Yangpu Waterfront, thus establishing the overall image of SUSAS 2019. Indeed, the Phase One Demonstration Section of Yangpu Waterfront Public Space Connection Project was the work of Prof. Zhang and his Original Design Studio.

Sep 2019

The Autumn

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2019年10月10日至13日期间,北京宝格丽酒店携手新主义NAISSANCE共同发起‘THE AUTUMN’主题艺术展,首次将北京宝格丽酒店内兼具意式典雅与当代气息的宝格丽套房和酒店花园呈现一场秋景入室的视觉盛宴和梦幻互动,为每一位宾客开启充满自然与艺术情致的秋之旅程。

新主义NAISSANCE介绍:新主义NAISSANCE成立于2015年,倡导新型艺术生活方式,我们致力于成为链接艺术和生活的桥梁!结合时代城市文化的发展,将艺术美学传达给公众,并深入公共文化生活中,去改变公众生活环境的同时解决并复兴城市消极空间积极的有效性。新主义NAISSANCE是一个多元的文化组织平台,其中集合了专业领域的空间设计、新媒体艺术、装置艺术、建筑设计、交互设计等扩领域人才,并通过公共艺术改造项目以及跨界转换的方式介入到各个空间,为公共生活提供无限的视觉体验与更新智慧,将新时代的文化回馈给人民大众。

策展人:张红雷
Curator: ZHANG HONGLEI

艺术家:任哲 | 董大为|刘韵菡|李天琦|郝经芳 & 王令杰|马灵丽|马秋莎|丁世伟|刘国强|刘亚&白洞
Artist : Ren zhe | Dong Dawei|Liu Yunhan| Li Tianqi| Jingfang HAO & LingjieWANG |Ma Lingli | Ma Qiusha |Ding Shiwei |Liu Guoqiang |Liu Ya & White Hole
项目发起:新主义NAISSANCE
展览时间:2019|10|10 - 2019|10 | 13
项目地点: 中国-北京宝格丽酒店(宝格丽套房1018)
Project location: China – beijjing

Jun 2019

The Drawing Hand

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What is drawing? Do drawing and painting have a different meaning in Chinese and in English? Can drawing be three-dimensional? Can drawing be dynamic? ……

Drawing, as a fundamental medium of artistic representation, has a variety of forms in the history of art, such as artistic writing, sketching, paper cutting, paper folding, or the wild and delicate lines under the artist’s hand. However, in contemporary art, as a medium to express ideas and concepts, drawing is a territory that allows for an infinity of forms and whose creative universe is extremely varied.

Pablo Picasso used to say, “Evidently one never knows what one is going to draw… but when one starts doingit, then a story is born, an idea… and there you go.”

With the aim of investigating the meaning of drawing through multiple aspects, Danysz Gallery makes “The Drawing Hand” a long-term exhibition project, which is dedicated to drawing in all its different forms, facilitates and encourages closer and more dynamic communications and interactions between Chinese and foreign artists.

Since 2007, “The Drawing Hand” has been a signature exhibition at Danysz Gallery. Based on five previous successful exhibitions, this summer, Danysz Gallery in Shanghai will proudly present the 6th edition of the exhibition “The Drawing Hand”, and invite once again its visitors to discover artworks from a rich selection of artists and to think through the meaning of drawing. The exhibition will be opened on next Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, and it will be on view until 31st August, 2019. This group show will include artists such as (the list below follows the alphabetical order of the artists’ last names):

aaajiao, Jef Aerosol, Berlina, Bianca Argimon, Tarek Benaoum, Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, Xiaoyi Chen, Chenyan Du, Guillaume Barborini, Yingjie Chen, Ben Edmunds, Chenyu Gong, Cecile Guettier, Jingfang HAO & Lingjie WANG, Jean-Samuel Halifi, Julia Haumont, Xiaoliang Huang, Feng Jin, Abdul Rahman Katanani, Kim Laughton, Jiying Lee, Hongbo Li, Shuiyang Liu, Yi Liu, Zhenchen Liu, Ludo, Lihua Ma, Malonne, Wenting Ma, Guanshuai Mao, Taras Milosevic, Salomé Partouche, Charles Petillon, Etienne Pottier, Sebastien Preschoux, Yingwei Pu, RadiKarl ArchiWe, Remi Rough, Georges Rousse, André Saraiva, Linghao Shen, Wei Shen, Siu, Soco, Xi Song, Yanchu Sun, Xin Wang, Tao Xia, Hao Xiang, Yiyang Yang, Diwen You, Michael Yu, Chong Zhang, Hong Zhao, Keke Zhang.

This exhibition involves artists from various geographical horizons — from Ludo to Maleonn —, each of them having invited another artist of their choice. It presents a pictorial language as varied as the myriad of interpretations suggested by the term “drawing”, including artworks made of strings, deep ink, paper cutting, paper folding, writing, or sculptural propositions that humorously resonate with the 80s, like Etch a Sketch. Giving total freedom of interpretation to the artists, “The Drawing Hand” proposes a portrait, dreamed of as exhaustive, of this rich and fertile ground.

On the white walls of the gallery, the artworks proliferate and spread all over in a dynamic and overwhelming exhibition layout. The viewer imagines the connections between the works. One tries to guess who invited whom… The viewer is continuously surprised by an unexpected medium or seduced by the exquisiteness of a pencil stroke. Drawing unites all these different forms of expression, and the works echo each other.

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“Funnily enough, what we mean by drawing isn’t the same thing in the western world as in Asia. We, at the gallery, are presenting this exhibition for the sixth time now since 2007. It revolves around this very simple concept: the artists featured in this exhibition—artists represented by Danysz, or simply friends of the gallery—were asked to present one or several drawings. But what exactly is drawing?

As often with cultural misunderstandings, confusion sprouts from language. In Chinese, drawing falls into the concept of a generic term for picture, painting, drawing. Like a wealthy and generous host, this term can accommodate a wide range of techniques, genres, practices, such as oil painting, sketching, comics, cartoon, traditional Chinese painting, western-style painting, etc. In Chinese, the emphasis is on the act of representing something—to paint, to draw a picture—and the finality of it, the actual representation—image, picture, drawing, painting.

In English however, drawing is not such a friendly host as the Chinese term. It isn’t such a lofty and elastic concept. In English, drawing doesn’t want to be mixed up with painting, and that is perhaps the most effective way to define it. Where painting usually demands the use of a brush to apply pigment, drawing traditionally keeps to its pens and pencils. Where painting unfolds as a full composition, with solid patches of color, drawing has more to do with “lines”, and indeed when they think of drawing, westerners often have in mind the “outline” of a representation.

Today it falls on you, visitors, as you wander about in the exhibition space, surrounded by such a rich collection of artworks, to settle this question: do you see the chinese term for drawing, or do you see drawing in the western sense? Or maybe both? But you might as well decide to discard these language categories altogether, and to do something less exposed to cultural landslides: you can decide to look, just look, and follow the artist’s hand.”

Magda Danysz, 2019

Jun 2019

Transmergence #01

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Transmergence est un nouveau format d’exposition du FRAC Alsace, qui veut rendre visible la scène artistique régionale et transfrontalière tout en questionnant sa définition et ses frontières.

L’exposition Transmergence #01 rassemble cinq positions artistiques complémentaires qui explorent le concept de Terre en tant que système
complexe et matière ayant pris forme.

Motivé(e)s par des approches biographiques ou géographiques, les artistes abordent le sujet de manière conceptuelle, formelle et intuitive,
en partant de la matière.

Les œuvres interrogent, recherchent et transforment la matière. Par la geste artistique, la pierre, le sel, le papier, le safran, le pollen de lotus, la chlorophylle, la lumière et l’eau parviennent à une morphologie surprenante, une nouvelle matérialité plastique et visuelle, une forme et une formulation propres.

De choses simples d’apparence émergent des enregistrements et dialogues complexes.

Avec les artistes
Guillaume Barth
Jingfang Hao & Lingjie Wang
Jochen Kitzbihler
Maren Ruben
Capucine Vandebrouck

– – –

Transmergence bezeichnet ein neues Aussstellungsformat des FRAC Alsace,
welches die regionale, grenzübergreifende Kunstszene sichtbar machen möchte und zugleich ihre Definition und Grenzen hinterfragt.

Transmergence #01 versammelt fünf komplementäre künstlerische Positionen, die den Begriff der Erde als komplexes System, als Materie, die Form angenommen hat, untersuchen.

Meist biographisch- geographisch motiviert, vom Material ausgehend, nähern sie sich dem Thema konzeptuell, formal und intuitiv.
Die Werke befragen, erforschen, und transformieren.

Durch die künstlerische Geste finden Stein,Salz, Papier, Safran, Lotuspollen,
Chlorophyll, Licht und Wasser zu überraschender Morphologie, zu neuer plastischer und visueller Stofflichkeit, zu Form und Form-ulierung.

Es entstehen Aufzeichnungen und Dialoge des Komplexen im scheinbar Einfachen.

Mit :
Guillaume Barth
Jingfang Hao & Lingjie Wang
Jochen Kitzbihler
Maren Ruben
Capucine Vandebrouck

May 2019

A White Space Odyssey

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Artists: Gao Lei, Gao Ludi, He Xiangyu, Jingfang Hao & Lingjie Wang, Ce Jian, Christine Sun Kim, Li Liao, Li Shurui, Liu Shiyuan, Liu Wentao, Liu Xinyi, Qin Jun, Shi Zhiying, Tan Tian, Tong Wenmin, Ignacio Uriarte, Wang Qiang, Wang Haiyang, Wang Tuo, Xie Fan, Yang Jian, Zhai Liang, Zhang Zipiao

Curator: Shen Chen

“As you set out for Ithaka, hope your road is a long one, full of adventure, full of discovery.”

In 1911, the Greek novelist Constantine Cavafy wrote these verses to a poem entitled, Ithaka. It expressed the writer’s nostalgia for his hometown and lament for long life. Being an exile in many ways, he distanced his writing from current literary trends. Instead, he created an independent spiritual world for his poetry. The island Cavafy mentioned in the poem is hero Odysseus’ hometown, portrayed in Homer’s 24-chapter epic, The Odyssey. In this epic, Odysseus, whose name means “way of mind” in ancient Greek, traveled for ten years on the sea to return to Ithaka.

As of now, dispersion has the attributes of many new and complex meanings. Particularly in the political and economic context of globalization, in a world decentralized yet connected through the Internet, to disperse may be construed as taking a proactive journey or making a self-driven choice. As in the case of 2001: A Space Odyssey, modeled on the classical literature of The Odyssey, in which a journey trapped on the sea is transformed into an active exploration to the enigmatic universe. In a world like the one we live in, the locations of birth, studies, work, and life for these 24 artists at White Space Beijing have also been shifting constantly on this long journey. However, we are more interested in the happiness, joy, confusion, obstacles, and the life they have inadvertently encountered, as well as how these experiences would pivotally impact their spiritual world and art practices?

A White Space Odyssey aims to present a “midway exposure” for the 24 artists’ journeys at White Space Beijing. By selecting these “cue-dependent” works of art that are transversal in their practice, we are given the opportunity to go back to the spiritual homeland of their respective artistic subjects. These “cue-dependent” works are not necessarily the most familiar pieces in their practices, however, to a certain degree, each exemplifies or embodies the artist’s personalized experiments and explorations with regards to subject matter, concept, and approach. With regards to the temporal component of this selection, some artists choose to exhibit their early works in order to address the approach they have taken that had a tremendous impact in their practice thereafter; others present the more recent works that exhibit the artists’ current and important transitions, as they may offer a response to their earlier practice. In terms of the spiritual component of the artworks, some embarked on introspective journeys that uncover the meanings of their internal experiences; others are proactively relating to the outside world and try to provide responses to the agitated realities – in spite in most cases, the two are intimately intertwined. These choices are made on the basis of the artists’ current work and their state of being, which aim to showcase their continuous critical thinking and commitment to art practice.

This exhibition is not interested in articulating a general experience. Instead, it hopes the viewer would engage with the practice of each individual artist by look into the long way they have come, tracing back their individual will, thinking, judgment and value choices. With the diversity and complexity of these individual lives, we hope to weave a radiant constellation and the possibility towards a future paradise.