Mountain Behind Wood Behind Mountain, Wood, oil on board, size variable, 2012

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Qiu Xiaofei, Venus at the Outlets Mall, Oil on canvas, light, wood, 480×470×358cm, 2013

Venus at the Outlets Mall was Qiu Xiaofei’s critical attempt to look at painting through the perspective of an object. The sculpture in his work is the one found in the outlets mall close to his studio, but the disproportional ratio in the night setting has made the sculptural replica into a referential point, what Qiu Xiaofei was more interested in commanding was the object in the painting, painting as the object, and the possible relationships between the object and the painting. In addition, he adjusted the sentimental qualities in these relationships on the pictorial, color and material levels. Eventually, the painting and the image, color and lighting, site and material became mutually interrupting yet congruent factors to the overall composition. This phase marked Qiu Xiaofei’s transition from “image” to “painting” when the physical quality of the painting is recognized and represented, could painting truly confronts today’s experience as a conventional vehicle, and Qiu Xiaofei’s recent works experiment on a different level as he preserves this medium. Qiu Xiaofei’s transition from being “academic” to “pictorial”, to “installation” and lastly returning to “painting”, seems to follow a logic against the artistic form, but one that embodies a true understanding of precedent and subsequent painting practices in contemporary Chinese art.

Zhang Qing, Taxi Samba, Video, Color, Sound, 6’00”, Nanjing (2003) / Germany (2005)

Back in 2003, ZHANG Qing performed Taxi Samba for the very first time in Re-turn NatureII: Pastoral in Nanjing, where ten taxies were designed to wait on two lines like ballroom dancing. Accompanied by sharp noise, they started and braked violently to dance a “taxi samba” when viewers were allowed to experi-ence hazard within safety distance as they walked among the thrilling and overwhelming performance.

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