Poster of Chang Yuchen, Barbaric Poetry

Between Art Lab (Beijing) and Fou Gallery (New York) are pleased to announce the opening of Chang Yuchen’s solo exhibition on September 12, 2015. Under the title of “Barbaric Poetry”, this exhibition will include Chang Yuchen’s works based on various media, including printmaking, installation, artists’ book, video and among the others. On the opening reception, Chang Yuchen will perform a sound piece that combines vocal and electronic synthesizer. The exhibition will last until October 20, 2015.

“Barbaric Poetry”, as title, derives from “to write a poem after Auschwitz is barbaric” by T. W. Adorno. As an essential part of an artist’s being, to write a poem is a barbaric act to a large degree–it requires indifference to keep the critical distance between the artist and his/her surroundings, and mercilessly the artist rinses and filters his/her own emotion to reach certain limpidity. In Chang Yuchen’s work, barbarity manifests itself in the tension between fragility and violence, between the artist and the media used, between the media and the images. In “Rose”, an installation composed of eleven pieces of copper-plate, repeated erosion and abrasion turned the surface as rough as a wild and unsettled planet, depriving every bit of the delicate and youthful quality that usually associated with the image of rose. In “Snake”, a set of etchings on mulberry paper, artist’s restrained gesture lends lightness and serenity to this epic and savage image; when looking closer, however, the viewer will find the intricately patterned scars on the surface of the snake are silently recalling certain turbulent history, in the same way that the ruins silently recalls the memory of the past warfare. In “Necklace, in Collaboration with Yuan Yi”, an installation includes objects and video, Chang wears a necklace made with sharp cullets – an ornament, but also a dangerous weapon. In the ordinary and feminine act of putting on a piece of accessory, violence, presents itself in an ordinary and feminine way. Also on display are the artists’ books “Catalogue of the Universe” and “Book of Catalogue of the Universe”, discussing the boundaries between mystery and enlightenment, experience and knowledge. In addition, “Drawing Book” is based on Chang’s conversation with her father in regarding to the Revolutionary Realism art of Soviet Union and its impact on two generations of Chinese artists; “Snake Book”, based on imaginary typology, explores the possibilities of texture and gradation of drawing. As Lisa Wainwright commented: “From print and performance, to sculpture, video and sound, Chang Yuchen creates work at once restrained and monumental. Modest gesture of exquisite craft reveals content rich in historic and personal symbolism. Born in China and schooled in Critical Theories, Chang Yuchen’ pluralistic output deliberately undercuts the dominance of any singular style. Instead, ideologies co-exist, cross-over, mingle, and jam. Hers is a contemporary global practice where east meets west, old meets new, and form becomes poetic wonder.”

About the exhibition

Dates: September 12–October 20, 2015

Opening Reception: Saturday, September 12, 2015, 4-6 pm
Location: Between Art Lab, Huantie Wuhuan, Jiuxianqiao Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10:00am – 6:00pm
Tel: 86.10.842.000.24
Courtesy of the artist, Between Art Lab and Fou Gallery, for further information please contact You Shen(

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