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The Face of Facebook-Intro


This classic side angle portrait was an illustration found on the September 20, 2010 issue of the New Yorker in a text titled, “The Face of Facebook”, in which the protagonist of the story was the founder of the global networking website Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg.
The Face of Facebook could be interpreted as via the Face of Facebook. There are two layers of meanings: one is about borrowing the image of Mark Zuckerberg, the public figure, as a way of saying something; the other is about the images that were created through invitations extended to other artists and friends. Individual expectations and personal experiences constitute the potency of the work, and also bring into the potency of a social question.
To re-enact this side portrait of Zuckerberg was Zhu Jia’s initial inspiration. More interestingly, the artist has invited over 50 friends from different professions to participate. Among them are acclaimed contemporary Chinese artists and personages from different professions such as, Zhang Xiaogang, Wang Guangyi, Zhang Peili, Yue Minjun, Liu Xiaodong, Liu Wei, Yan Peiming, Liu Ye, Yang Fudong, Zhan Wang, Yang Shaobin, Sun Xun etc. They will contribute a portrait in their own artistic style, or in completely novel representations. Without any signatures on these artworks, it will be difficult to identify the creator of the artwork. Much like the status updates and photo albums posted by Facebook users, the real and the illusory are often intertwined. Zhu Jia’s choice of Zuckerberg’s portrait was a coincidence, or largely affected by the aesthetics of the photograph itself, or perhaps even the ubiquitous social network of Facebook? Its inherent ambivalence and its tumultuous fate in China have been dramatic. By appropriating the irony of “The Face of Facebook”, Zhu weaved a complex network of visual art, by which to initiate an unspeakably ambiguity in a struggle of power.
Zhu Jia is conceptually probing unique visual experiences beyond regular ones. This project is a seemingly replacement of his Facebook account in China (Facebook is banned in mainland China), yet it goes more than that. As Zhu has once commented, “This is not a question of artistic creation per se, but it delves into the question of power, politics, art rules, as well as art markets.

* Zhu Jia has invited:
Bai Yinan (白轶男)
Bi Jianfeng (毕建锋)
Cao Yuxi (曹玉西)
Chen Shaoxiong (陈劭雄)
Chen Tong (陈侗)
Dongfang Yue (东方月)
Duan Yanling (段妍玲)
Gao Feng (高峰)
Li Zhaojun (李兆君)
Lin Yilin (林一林)
Liu Qing (刘青)
Liu Wei (刘伟)
Liu Xiaodong (刘小东)
Liu Ye (刘野)
Lu Yi (陆屹)
Ni Haifeng (倪海峰)
Rong Kang (戎康)
Shi Miaomiao (石苗苗)
Shi Yong (施勇)
Sun Xun (孙逊)
Wang Di (王迪)
Wang Guangyi (王广义)
Wang Ruoxi (王若羲)
Wang Youshen (王友身)
Xie Dongming (谢东明)
Xie Nanxing (谢南星)
Xu Jia (徐佳)
Xu Tan (徐坦)
Yan Peiming (严培明)
Yang Fengyu (杨丰羽)
Yang Fudong (杨福东)
Yang Qian (杨千)
Yang Shaobin (杨少斌)
Yang Yongsheng (杨永生)
Ye Le (叶乐)
Yin Qi (尹齐)
Yin Xiaozhou (尹筱周)
Yue Minjun (岳敏君)
Zeng Hao (曾浩)
Zhan Wang (展望)
Zhan Ying (詹滢)
Zhang Fan (张帆)
Zhang Peili (张培力)
Zhang Xiaogang (张晓刚)
Zhao Gang (赵刚)
Zheng Guogu (郑国谷)
Zheng Lin (郑林)
Zhou Qing'an (周庆安)
Zhu Shuangqing (朱双庆)
Zhu Ziqian (朱紫芊)
Zhuang Hui & Dan'er (庄辉&旦儿) etc.,
to contribute based on
Mark Zuckerberg’s portrait.

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