Ming Wong: Next Year

Ming Wong: Next Year

UCCA, Beijing

Ming Wong, Next Year / L’Année Prochaine, 2015. Production still. Courtesy the artist.

June 15, 2015

Ming Wong
Next Year

11 June–9 August 2015

Ullens Center for Contemporary Art
798 Art District, No. 4 Jiuxianqiao Lu

T +86 10 5780 0200
visitor [​at​] ucca.org.cn 


From June 11 to August 9, the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art presents the solo exhibition Ming Wong: Next Year, comprised of two new works from the Singaporean artist. In Scenography for a Chinese Science Fiction Opera, Wong turns the Nave into a stage, fusing the aesthetics of the spaceship referenced in Chinese and American cinematic history with traditional cloud patterns based on Chinese cosmology of immateriality. Continuing the futurist theme, Wong has re-staged the French New Wave classic Last Year at Marienbad with his film Next Year / L’Année Prochaine. The two pieces continue with thematic threads evident in the artist’s previous works, continuing his exploration of temporality.

For the installation Scenography for a Chinese Science Fiction Opera, Ming Wong closes off the Nave, mimicking the three-dimensional set design of traditional stage theater with more than ten wooden backdrops. Painted to resemble the interior of a spaceship and swirls of clouds, the backdrops are bifurcated down the middle allowing visitors to walk the length of the hall, through this man-made scene, to its conclusion—a kaleidoscopic, disorienting wheel of color. Ming Wong’s installation appears to follow a narrative: visitors emerge from the spaceship, thereby entering the space of the open sky. But in actuality, this piece contains two mismatched parts: the sky is painted after the universe found in traditional Chinese opera and ancient religious murals, abstract and bright, contrasting sharply with the dark, naturalistic spaceship. The two sets of iconography represent a multifaceted cultural landscape and a non-linear timeframe derived from Wong’s investigations of the modernization of Cantonese opera, ancient Chinese wall painting, and science-fiction films from China and abroad. Visitors are enveloped within a futuristic science-fiction movie set then given over to a mural painting of the sky, seemingly walking towards the future yet facing the past. The installation calls into question the linear, continuous, and quantitative aspects of time.

Ming Wong: Next Year is the first installment of UCCA’s Secret Timezones Trilogy, a suite of consecutive solo exhibitions by contemporary Asian artists whose works reveal dislocated temporalities lying dormant behind mundane objects. The trilogy is curated by UCCA consulting curator Venus Lau, this exhibition with assistant curator Zoe Diao. Further exhibitions include Korakrit Arunanondchai and Haegue Yang.

The Secret Timezones Trilogy is sponsored by SEDANT•ZIQUE. The new media art production partner is CP and WTi. Exclusive sponsorship of sound equipment comes from GENELEC. The exhibition catalogue is published with support from Post Wave Publishing Consulting. Hainan Airlines provided airline sponsorship. Vitamin Creative Space provided production support for Next Year / L’Année Prochaine.

Editorial contacts: 
Ling Chen, UCCA: ling.chen [​at​] ucca.org.cn
Dylan Shuai, Sutton PR Asia: dylan [​at​] suttonprasia.com



Ming Wong: Next Year at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA)
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June 15, 2015

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