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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.

Apr 2019

Laureate Contemporary Talents, François Schneider Foundation

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The call for applications for the 8 th edition was held from 1 st September to 1 st November 2018. The names of the 47 finalists of the competition chosen by 4 Expert Committees were announced in February 2019 and a booklet with 47 pre works -selected has just been published.

The final selection will take place on 4 April 2019 at the grand jury meeting in Wattwiller.
The selection of the winners will be announced on April 5 at 11 am at the François Schneider Foundation by Jean-Noël Jeanneney, President of the Grand Jury.

The 2019 grand jury, chaired by Jean-Noël Jeanneney , is composed of renowned personalities from the world of the arts:
Felizitas Diering (FRAC Alsace Director)
Alfred Pacquement (Heritage Curator, France)
Ernest Pignon Ernest (artist, France)
Fabrizio Plessi (artist , Italy)
Roland Wetzel (Director of the Tinguely Museum, Switzerland)

Meeting in Wattwiller on April 4th, the grand jury chose 7 artists of 4 nationalities as winners of the 8 th edition of the contest.
> Rachael Louise Bailey (United Kingdom) Global, 2018 . Sculpture, 3m in diameter.
> Guillaume Barth (France) The Second World, Elina, 2015. Video, 4mn41.
> Olivier Crouzel (France) 18 curtains, 2015. installation, 11,520 x 3,240 cm.
> Hao Jingfang and Wang Lingjie  (China – France) Over the rainbow, 2016. Installation, variable dimensions.
> Eva Nielsen (France)Zode IV , 2018. Painting, 200 x 180 cm.
> Capucine Vandebrouck (France) Puddle , 2017. Installation, variable dimensions.
> Wiktoria Wojciechowska (Poland – France) Short Flashes , 2013. Photography, 80 x 768 cm.

The works of the laureates will be presented in a collective exhibition at the Foundation’s art center and will be part of their collection. Over the years, a unique set of forty pieces has been created by the acquisition of the works of the laureates – drawings, paintings, sculptures, videos, photos or installations – illustrating the theme of water from different angles (scientific, political, ecological, philosophical, etc.) and testifying to the diversity of artistic practices of the 21st century.

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Apr 2019

Cosmos:2019

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Cosmos : 2019
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Curator : Valerie Perrin
From 13th April till 20th July 2019

In the era of new technologies and the exploration of Mars, how do contemporary artists view, appropriate, interrogate the cosmos? Has the development and accessibility of certain data, initiated new artistic practices, new fantasies, new “alien” encounters? These are the questions that the exhibition’s Cosmos: 2019 would like to ask.
With : Susan Hiller, Cécile Beau, Venzha Christ, Guillaume Bertrand, les Éditions à Mort, David Guez, Jingfang Hao & Lingjie Wang, Esther Hunziker, Marie Lienhard, Silvi Simon, RYBN.ORG.

During the 1960s at the time of the Cold War, Space was an issue of national prestige, power and rivalry between the United States and the U.S.S.R. In reaction to the U.S.S.R. sending the first man into space (1961), the United States, sent the first man to the Moon. So, on July 20 1969, during the Apollo XI mission, man took his first step on the moon.
This historical event was broadcast globally, live via satellite, over television and radio, and reached an audience of more than 500 million people on this Blue Planet. A landmark event in media history, these images sparked a fertile imagination of space travel, confirming the aesthetic intuition of Stanley Kubrik’s film 2001 : A Space Odyssey, which had been released one year earlier. Where fiction anticipates reality…
Fifty years later, space became less about national conquest, more about scientific research and technological development with international collaborations like the International Space Station. Their images inundate the Internet and are quite accessible to all.
In the era of new technologies and the exploration of Mars, how do contemporary artists view, appropriate, interrogate the cosmos ? Has the development and accessibility of certain data, initiated new artistic practices, new fantasies, new “alien” encounters? These are the questions that the exhibition’s Cosmos: 2019 would like to ask.
Cosmos: 2019 is introduced by two codes: first, ‘Binary Stele’ by David Guez, which imprints the binary code of the iconic photo of man’s first steps on the moon onto material, thus retaining this image for eternity, second, an installation by Guillaume Bertrand, of the navigation software for the Apollo XI program, remembers Margaret Hamilton, the woman who created this software yet remained unknown for forty-seven years and because of whom, men were able to walk on the Moon.
The art works presented in the exhibition Cosmos: 2019 propose another journey in space: in the literal sense by experiencing flight with Logics of Gold by Marie Lienhard, and also by discovering the poetic and fictitious galaxies of Cécile Beau, solar and martian traces of Jinfang Hao and Lingjie Wang, Ester Hunziker and Silvi Simon. Cosmos: 2019 is also an opportunity to meet those who observed unidentified flying objects in the sky through the installation of Susan Hiller, the pop up book of Editions à Mort which gives a voice to ufologists. And, with the researches of Venzha Christ and RYBN.ORG to ask whether the cosmos might now be a new territory for intervention by artists.
Cosmos: 2019 towards another space conquest?
Opening on Saturday 13th October at 5 p.m in Espace multimédia Gantner

Feb 2019

COCOSMO

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Les recherches de Jingfang Hao et Lingjie Wang sont le fruit d’une « exaltante alliance des contraires ».

Leurs oeuvres puisent aux racines de la culture chinoise et sont nourries de références à l’histoire de l’art occidentale. A la fois
conceptuelles et sensuelles, objet et processus.

Cette bipolarité, que l’on retrouve dans le taoïsme mystique originel sous la forme du Yin et du Yang, est davantage une façon d’être au monde qu’un système.

Chacune de leurs oeuvres repose sur un dialogue entre une conception cartésienne et mathématique, héritée de leur formation d’ingénieurs et d’un intérêt pour l’art conceptuel occidental, et une vision sensuelle et poétique du monde et de la nature liée à leur culture chinoise et à leur connaissance de la matière qui compose les objets qui nous entourent.

Dec 2018

Rolling Snowball

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At 3:00 afternoon,on December 15, 2018.“Rolling Snowball·Nanjing”will be opened at AMNUA.This exhibition is led by Li Xiaoshan as the art director.Ineke Gudmundsson as the academic adviser and Chen Rui,Li Meilan are appointed as the curators.This exhibition will focus on the art works of 52 Chinese and foreign artists, including sketches,paintings,oil paintings,photography,installations,sculptures,performance,images and some comprehensive mediums.

Since 2010, “Rolling Snowball”project has been initiated by the China European Art Center and has been held for eleventh. The Rolling Snowball event brings together Chinese and foreign artists from different part of the world, whose fields span a wide range of media. This cultural exchange and cooperation has greatly enriched the culture, ideas and concepts of artists from all over the world, and helped them to refine their artistic views and redefine their relationship with the arts. This cross-cultural exchange is part of its thinking and is of great benefit to their work and connections at home and abroad.

International exchange is a nutrient for art itself. Art flows in every corner of the world. Cultural exchange can also be considered an art of perspectives. In the long history of intercultural relations, preconceptions and old narratives were tested, revised and adjusted through both dialogues and conflicts. In the best scenarios, we learn from one another and seek commonality despite differences, leading to deeper mutual understanding and greater mutual respect. The culture of the “other” is also like a mirror, reflecting our own cultural texture, so that we can look at ourselves more objectively through the perspective of the other. A richer perspective brings a broader perspective, and it allows us to become more aware of our own foothold in the broader world.

This winter, Let’s Rolling the Snowball in Nanjing!

Aug 2018

Minimal Light

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Danysz gallery – Shanghai presents a group show of four contemporary Chinese artists this autumn. The title of this group show – Minimal Light, is inspired by a poetry of the legendary Canadian poet and singer Leonard Cohen “Anthem”. In this poetry, he writes: “there is a crack, a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” Light from the crack is usually very small, but it represents a glean hope of survival. In this case, light becomes a kind of spiritual awareness.

In Minimal Light, you can discover Hao Jingfang & Wang Lingjie’s newest creations which come from the on-going project “Rainbow”. They have created several shapes of lakes facing of the danger of drying up. In this installation, light is brought in where refraction and reflection of the microspheres composes a rainbow for the viewers from different perspectives.

Minimal Light also presents several conceptual artworks by Song Xi. His video “Ode to Joy” recorded his performance. In the darkness, he patted the flies with electric flapper. Sparks are produced, and they are as beautiful and brilliant as fireworks. This light reminds us of a collection of poems Fireflies by Rabindranath Tagore. He once said: “You tiny, but you do not small.” Firefly is a small insect with weak light. However, once gathering lots of fireflies, they shine for the world to see.

Another key word of this group show is “minimal” which can be interpreted by Ma Lihua’s paintings. In his creation, the underlying language of white and sand is combined, through the interspersed handwriting, to combine a deep sense of space, forming a rhythm and feeling. Ma Lihua expresses the true spiritual world by means of an appropriate abstract image.