Beijing Commune is pleased to announce the opening of Shang Yixin's second solo exhibition "— —" at the gallery on October 20th, 2016. The exhibition will continue until December 3rd, 2016.
Shang Yixin's practice traverses painting and installation, and is especially marked by his persistent attempts to employ varied mediums to convey artistic ideas. The upcoming exhibition is comprised of the artist's three latest installation works, all of which were produced after he turned to light and several other new mediums as sources for experimentation in 2008. The mutually dependent, mutually molding, and mutually transforming relationships between light, matter, and shadow constitute a motif that has always interested the artist. Through a constantly self-adjusting practice, Shang addresses and examines the relationships between viewing and being viewed, individual and community, and logic and cognition.
The exhibition opens with —, one of the three installation works with symbolic titles that make up the exhibition. A set of flashlights "observe" a wire from a distance. Hung at different angles and swinging back and forth, the mode of "observation" of the flashlights incises the shadow of the wire, projecting its fragments onto the wall behind it on a parallel plane. Specks of light and shattered pieces of shadows overlay, divorce, and intersperse in repetition.
The transformation of the light and the shadow produced by the moving light source and the static wire releases an uncertainty and a state of flux from their dialectic. In 1&N, the artist arranges wood strips of uniform size into a particular form, then uses a technique that resembles a carpenter marking an ink line to leave a straight line on the woodwork. The line is soon after reconfigured, curved and severed following a game-like logic, and as the straight line moves and changes its shape, the original form of the wood strips also alters. After that, the form of the wood strips is in turn reconfigured in the same fashion: as the wood strips move closer to or further away from each other, they reassemble into other forms, and the shape of the original straight line also shifts accordingly.
In the other light installation +, several flashlights are focused on the same point on a wall, leaving a large, overlapping halo on it. A thin metal sheet over the head of each flashlight closes and opens at a regular rhythm. The split second when all metal sheets close, the focal point on the wall disappears and disperses into several points; when they open, the points will then converge back into a single focal point. Repeating in a loop, this blink-like motion is at once a shift of focal points in space and a rhythmic incision. It blurs the boundary between being and nothingness, inside and outside, real and illusory, individual and group, and certainty and ambivalence. The three works present a repetitive mode of "observation" that casts a kind of certainty into an ambivalent and ever-changing condition, providing the audience with a viewing experience open to interpretation.
Shang Yixin was born in 1980 in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province. In 2007 he graduated from the China Academy of Art Department of Oil Painting. Currently he lives and works in Hangzhou. His works have been exhibited in How Art Museum's group show "28°00′N 120°42′E" (Wenzhou, 2015), Rubell Family Collection's show of collected works by Chinese artists "28 Chinese"(Miami, 2013), "ON | OFF:China's Young Artists in Concept and Practice" at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (Beijing, 2013), and "Daily of Concept: A Practice of Life—The Fifth Shanghai Duolun Youth Art Exhibition" at the Shanghai Duolun Musuem of Modern Art (Shanghai, 2012), etc.
Press release courtesy Beijing Commune.