Waldburger Wouters is pleased to announce Movement Field, a solo show by Xu Zhen, produced by MadeIn Company. The show opens the weekend of September 11–13 and will be on view until November 7, 2015.
Movement Field, initiated in 2013 by Xu Zhen, is a long-term art creation and research project. It consists of a garden created out of a maze of various sized paths. Each path within the garden is the replica—enlarged or reduced—of a protest route found on the Internet. The ideological composition of these socio-political demonstrations from various places throughout world history lends the artwork the quality of a memorial. A seemingly peaceful garden invites visitors to retrace the paths of earlier generations and to symbolically reenact these marches.
Movement Field at Waldburger Wouters is presented as a large-scale installation featuring an indoor miniature-garden covering the gallery floor, interspersed with a selection of ten Movement paintings. The Movement Field garden and the Movement paintings have been specifically created for the exhibition at Waldburger Wouters.
Click here for more information about Xu Zhen's Movement Field project
About Xu Zhen's work
It comes as no surprise that Xu Zhen is regularly referred to as a trickster, an art chameleon, and a prankster. Although still quite young (born 1977), he has already had an impressive career as an artist and is regarded as an important influence for a younger generation of artists in China. He got his start very early on in the Chinese art scene of the mid-to-late nineties, where he went through various developmental phases, experimenting with a range of different interests in artistic creation from body art and performance, to complex art installations, media art, and collective art practices, to name a few. In 2000, Xu Zhen exhibited his work in the legendary Fuck Off exhibition in Shanghai (curated by Feng Boyi and Ai Weiwei), and is to-date the youngest artist from China to have participated at the Venice Biennial (2001 and 2005). In 2009, Xu Zhen ceased working as an individual artist and created MadeIn Company, which allows him to approach artistic production collectively.
Xu Zhen’s interests are diverse and his reflective examination of his environment results in multi-layered works. Xu Zhen likes to challenge the spectator and often evokes seemingly simple associations, whereas the subtle multi-layered character of his works mostly requires more time and consideration. It is as if Xu Zhen were playing with two levels in his works: A first and simple one, which allows room for misunderstandings and false assumptions, and a second level consisting of tightly-knit associations and multi-layered meanings, which only reveal themselves after deeper reflection and scrutiny. These different levels, the seemingly simple one and the complex one, create an interdependent tension in the overall work that unsettles the viewer, forcing him to question his judgment. Ultimately, this questioning forces the viewer to abandon uncritical assessments and to develop independent and reflective perspectives. Xu Zhen illustrates the subtleness of Chinese art and Chinese society and motivates us to dig further, even if classical stereotypes offer seemingly easy explanations.
Xu Zhen was born in 1977 in Shanghai, where he still lives. He has exhibited internationally, either as Xu Zhen or as MadeIn Company, at numerous museums and biennales including the Venice Biennale (2001, 2005), the Museum of Modern Art (New York, 2004), ICP (2004), Mori Art Museum (2005), PS1 (2006), Tate Liverpool (2007), Ruhrtriennale (2012), Hayward Gallery (2012), Witte de With in Rotterdam (2012, 2015), Lyon Biennale (2013), etc. He has had solo shows at S.M.A.K. in Ghent (2009), at IKON Gallery in Birmingham (2009), at Kunsthalle Bern (2011), at Ullens Center of Contemporary Art in Beijing (2014), and at the Long Museum in Shanghai (2015). A major solo show of Xu Zhen is forthcoming at Kunsthaus Graz (September 29, 2015 – January 10, 2015). In 2014, Xu Zhen was selected as the commissioned artist for the Armory Show and was featured at Art Basel in the Art Unlimited section and in 14 Rooms, a live performance project.
In 2009, Xu Zhen established MadeIn Company, a contemporary art creation corporation focusing on the production of creativity and devoted to researching contemporary culture’s infinite possibilities. In 2013, MadeIn Company launched the brand “Xu Zhen”.
Xu Zhen, recent and forthcoming:
Upcoming Xu Zhen solo show at Kunsthaus Graz
September 27, 2015 - January 10, 2016
Recent feature on Xu Zhen in Parkett Magazine, June 2015
Text on Xu Zhen in Frieze Magazine, May 2014