We are delighted to announce that Yang Xinguang's solo exhibition will open on 28 November 2019. As his fourth show at Beijing Commune, Above the Soil will showcase the artist's latest works and run until 5 February 2020.
Over the last few years, Yang Xinguang seems to always take 'soil' as his starting point. Using natural materials like twigs, leaves and foxtails that can be found 'above the soil', the show maintains the internal logic that runs throughout the artist's creative process, one in which he sets out to explore the changes and evolution of the form according to the order of nature.
One of Yang Xinguang's recent experiments includes spraying acrylic paint onto dead plants and withered leaves, during which the natural quality of the vegetation is gradually replaced by a social quality brought by the various bright and artificial colours, ranging from iridescent green, yellow and copper to pastel green, violet and blue. As a result, nature is absorbed into the chain of production. While flamboyant colours stand out against the plain backdrop, they are neverthess toned down to set off the irregular colour blocks when being brought to the back. The colour contrast nicely compliments the black and white exhibition wall.
Rugged rocks store mineral pigments, and 'soils' are essentially collective particles of the consolidated mineral mass. They neither bury nor reject any form of life. In this exhibition, dark and solid rocks are purposefully enlarged to spread the walls so that their natural status gives way to being part of the urban environment. The artificial colours in this new body of work serve to remind us that the 'estranged' landscape is no longer made of mineral matter in a traditional way, albeit its natural elements could still grow locally and grasscycle. In the process, each material's origianl cultural quality is subverted.
Yang Xinguang strives to trace the origin of nature, whilst explore to what extent this original state can be transformed by art. Through his intervention, a new landscape is unfolded in the exhibition space to challenge audience's aesthetic appreciation. The eyes will step in for the body to ramble in the space. This turns to Yang Xinguang's consistent position as a contemporary person who estranges 'tradition', through which he manages to reset his relationship with the world.
Yang Xinguang (b. 1980, Hunan) graduated from China Central Academy of Fine Arts with a Bachelor's degree in 2007. He now lives and works in Beijing. Yang Xinguang has taken part in exhibitions such as 'Super Organism CAFAM Biennale' (CAFAM, Beijing, 2011), 'The First CAFAM Future Exhibition: Sub-phenonmena: Report on the State of Chinese Young Art' (CAFAM, Beijing, 2012), 'The 9th Shanghai Biennale' (Power Station of Art, Shanghai, 2012) and 'The 1st Monte Video Biennial' (Urguay, 2012), etc. His works have been featured in many museums and institutions, such as Galleria Nazionale D'arte Moderna E Contemporanea, Italy; The National Gallery of Georgia; White Rabbit Museum, Australia; Frac des Pays de la Loire, France; Singapore Art Museum; Lehmbruck Museum; Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing; Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai; Minsheng Art Museum, Beijing; and so on.He won the 2010 Chinese Contemporary Art Golden Palm and the Nomination Award in Wu Zuoren Art Awards. In 2011, he was nominated for the Signature Art Prize and his work was showcased in the eponymous exhibition at the Singapore Art Museum. He was nominated for HUGO BOSS Asia Prize 2015, 'Young Artist of the Year' by the Award of Art China (AAC), and the 2nd Huayu Youth Award in the same year. His works have been collected by Fosun Art Foundation (Shanghai), M+ (Hong Kong, China), Kadist Art Foundation (Paris and San Francisco) and FRAC des Pays de la Loire (Nantes, France), etc.
Text by Meng Xianhui. Press release courtesy Beijing Commune.