The second instalment in the series of screenings presents Chen Xiaoyun, who works primarily with video and photography, as well as other mediums such as painting, sculpture, and installation. Entering the field of contemporary Chinese video art in its second phase, Chen is part of the shift from the initial 'concept and installation' approach of video art into a more diversified practice, when 'new media art' and 'experimental clips' began to rise in popularity and acceptance in the early 2000s.
Known for the poeticism in his early video works, Chen turned toward a more powerful and succinct visual language in the mid-2000s. Two of the works shown as part of the screening, FIRE-3000KG (2009) and Night/2.4JM (2009), features students burning a truck of book and migrant workers in a silent march respectively, examining the socio-political condition through the lens of a collective state of being. Chen's casting of non-professionals to perform conceptual gestures is in contrast to Zhu Jia's use of scripted acting and stage sets.
Chen continued to diversify his mode of narration in video art by overlapping text on images, weaving in layers of metaphors and symbolisms to constuct visuals that overwhelm the senses. With this approach, the works Evolutionary History of Syrup Cosmos (2013) and It Is Sunny In Spite of Burning Umbrella (2013) push his images to an even more absurd and seemingly nonsensical level.
Across his video works, fragmented narratives portray parts of our reality while the audience are invited to fill in the context with their own knowledge. Forced to switch back and forth between a passive mode of watching and an active mode of reading, Chen's video works stimulate a viewer in more ways than one is able to comprehend.
Press release courtesy ShanghART.
9 Lock Road, 02–22
+65 673 495 37
+65 673 490 37 (Fax)
The gallery is open by appointment only until further notice.
Wed - Sun, 11am - 7pm
Closed on Monday, Tuesday and Public Holidays