Coming out of a generation that witnessed the ramifications of the Cultural Revolution, the Tiananmen Massacre and the landmark 1989 China/Avant-Garde exhibition and its subsequent closing by state authorities, Hangzhou-based artist Zhang Peili and Beijing-based artist Zhu Jia have used the medium of video and photography since the early 1990s to navigate the sea of changes in contemporary China. Although both earned degrees in oil painting, the radical departure between their training and practice and their consistent use of video as a medium for provocation, reflection and resonance becomes the impetus for this two-person exhibition. Their bodies of work begin with a position that poignantly challenges social mores, rampant development, authoritative politics and cultural values, and expand into more universal themes of the individual, time, and the loss of innocence and idealism. Zhang and Zhu present new works for REDCAT exhibited alongside past work, providing a focused, parallel examination of their respective practices. The exhibition is the first presentation of both artists’ work in Los Angeles. REDCAT hours Fri Sep 17–Sun Nov 21 | Tues–Sun, noon–6 pm or intermission.
Opening reception at REDCAT on Thursday, September 16, 6–9 pm
Due to unforeseen circumstances, the screening and conversation scheduled for Friday, September 17 at the haudenschildGarage, has been cancelled.
About the Artists
Zhang Peili (b. 1957, Hangzhou) graduated from the China Academy of Art, Hangzhou in 1984. He has been called the “Father of Chinese video art” and is a leading figure in the Chinese contemporary art scene ever since the mid-1980s. His influence on his peers and his role as educator of younger generations of artists cannot be emphasized enough. As the main founder of the first new media department in the Chinese art eductation system, his pedagogical engagement has been greatly fruitful. He has had solo exhibitions at Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Plymouth (2009); OCT Contemporary Art Terminal, Shenzhen (2008); and Museum of Modern Art, New York (1999). Zhang has also been included in ‘85 New Wave, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing (2007); China Power Station, Serpentine Gallery, London (2006); Alors la Chine?, Centre Pompidou, Paris; Zone of Urgency, Venice Biennale (2003); Global Conceptualism, Queens Museum of Art, New York (1999); Cities on the Move, CAPC musée d’Art contemporain de Bordeaux and Secession, Vienna (1997-9); Inside Out, P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (1998). Zhang lives and works in Hangzhou where he serves as founding dean and professor of the New Media Department at the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou.
Zhu Jia (b. 1963, Beijing) graduated from Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing in 1988. He has presented work at Trans Local Motion, Shanghai Biennale (2008); Not Only Possible, But Also Necessary, Istanbul Biennale (2007); World Factory, San Francisco Art Institute (2007); Zooming into Focus: Contemporary Chinese Photography & Video from the Haudenschild Collection, National Art Museum of China (2005); The Second Guangzhou Triennial (2005); Alors la Chine?, Centre Pompidou, Paris (2003); Zone of Urgency, Venice Biennale (2003); Time After Time, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco (2003); Tempo, Museum of Modern Art, New York (2002); Living in Time, Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin (2001); Translated Acts, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin and Queens Museum of Art, New York (2001); Cities on the Move, CAPC musée d’Art contemporain de Bordeaux and Secession, Vienna (1997-9); Every Day, 11th Biennale of Sydney (1998). Zhu lives and works in Beijing.
*Image: Left: Zhang Peili, Uncertain Pleasure, Right: Zhu Jia, Forever