May 12, 2020 - UCCA, Beijing - Meditations in an Emergency
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May 12, 2020

UCCA, Beijing

Zhang Hui, Just Like in the Mirror 2, 2018. Oil on canvas, 120.5 x 80 cm.

Meditations in an Emergency
May 21–August 30, 2020

UCCA, Beijing
798 Art District
No. 4 Jiuxianqiao Road, Chaoyang District
100015 Beijing
China
Hours: Monday–Sunday 10am–7pm

T +86 10 5780 0200

ucca.org.cn
Instagram / Facebook / Twitter

Meditations in an Emergency
May 21–August 30, 2020

UCCA, Beijing
798 Art District
No. 4 Jiuxianqiao Road, Chaoyang District
100015 Beijing
China
Hours: Monday–Sunday 10am–7pm

T +86 10 5780 0200

ucca.org.cn
Instagram / Facebook / Twitter

The world is undergoing, separately, the first global moment of the 21st century. Amidst a pandemic that has brought commerce and culture to a halt, and against the backdrop of renewed mortality, heightened tension, and amorphous suspension, we wonder: What is art for? 

Meditations in an Emergency understands implicitly that it will be seen by people wearing masks, standing two meters apart from one another. People whose temperatures have just been measured and do not exceed 37.2 degrees centigrade. People whose data trails can verify that they have been in China for the last fourteen days or longer. (Have we ever been able to assume so much about our visitors?) It grows, in the wake of other plans now discarded or postponed, from the uncertainty—epidemiological, economic, organizational—that has become our shared predicament. Working from the precepts of the world we now inhabit, it unfolds in five sections and asks questions about the everyday, about mortality, about animality, about globalization, about information.

The exhibition brings together more than 20 artists from China and elsewhere, and includes works made in the past 15 years. It also features an archival presentation of the exhibition Blue Sky Exposure, held at the end of the SARS epidemic in 2003. It takes its name from the title of an anthology by Frank O’Hara (1926-1966), the American poet better known during his short lifetime as a curator at the Museum of Modern Art. “In times of crisis,” he declares in one of the featured poems, “we must all decide again and again whom we love.” 

Participating artists include Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Musquiqui Chihying, Forensic Architecture, Han Bing, Christopher K. Ho, Joyce Ho, Hsu Chia-Wei, Hu Rui, Pierre Huyghe, Jiang Zhuyun, Oliver Laric, Amiko Li, Li Liao, Lu Lei, Shana Moulton, Qiu Anxiong, Mika Rottenberg, Angela Su, Wolfgang Tillmans, Yi Xin Tong, Wang Bing, Yang Fudong, Zhang Hui, Zhang Peili, Robert Renhui Zhao, and Payne Zhu. “Meditations in an Emergency” is curated by the UCCA exhibitions team: Guo Xi, Luan Shixuan, Ara Qiu, Rocky Lin, Duffy Du, and Neil Zhang.

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