As the first presentation of projects from the young generation of Chinese contemporary artists, Evolution: A Question brings a new and lively dimension to YUAN Space’s on-going exhibition programme. Combining installations, film and documentary works and paintings as the mediums used by Hu Yun, Guo Hongwei and Museum of Unknown, the diverse display is united by a common endeavour and set of concerns: the nature of art and its public display in the ever-changing culture of today.
Exquisitely designed and finished, YUAN Space has all the qualities of a professional museum. It is a perfect place to experience art. For Evolution: A Question, it is the perfect setting to gain experience of the energy that these artists bring to new ways of achieving artistic expression, ways which to their thinking are not always reliant on producing a finished art work in the traditional sense. As Museum of Unknown demonstrates, audience participation can be art as much as anything touched by an artist. The three participants each work in rather different ways, each of which reflects the evolution of viewing and experiencing culture and art as a human activity, as has formed through several centuries of museum-going.
The three participants present their each work in rather different ways, each of which reflects the evolution of viewing and experiencing culture and art as a human activity, as has formed through several centuries of museum-going. Shanghai-based Hu Yun looks back to an imperial age, during which colonizers played a particular role in mapping the natural world; contributing to collections which are today the core of natural history museums, like London’s Natural History Museum. The Secret Garden II: Reeves’s Pheasant is an elegant installation, filled with intriguing minutiae. It would be at home in any history museum, but deploys very contemporary means to comment on the complexities of history that surrounded the power to form such collections in the nineteenth century.
Curator: Karen Smith, Director of OCAT Xi’an
Karen Smith is a curator and art critic specializing in contemporary art in China since 1979. She has written widely on the subject for numerous journals and exhibition catalogues, and is the author of numerous artist monographs. Her curatorial work includes numerous group and solo exhibitions for China’s contemporary artists in China as well as abroad, including The Real Thing at Tate Liverpool (2007), The Chinese: Photography and Video Art from China at the Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg (2004), Music to My Eyes at Today Art Museum, Beijing (2009), and Subtlety at Platform China (2008), as well as solo exhibitions for Liu Xiaodong, Ai Weiwei and Xu Bing in the US and the UK. In August 2012, she was appointed executive director of OCAT Xi’an, the newest contemporary art centre under the OCAT Shenzhen Museum Group, launched in 2013. She has lived in Beijing since 1992.
About the exhibition
Duration: September 28 to November 16, 2013
Venue: YUAN Space, Beijing
Opening: 16:00, September 27, 2013
Add: 20/F, Tower B, Jiaming Center No.27 Eastern 3rd Ring Road (North) Chaoyang District, Beijing
Courtesy of the artists and YUAN Space, for further information please visit www.yuanspace.cn.