Jiang Zhi: Life / Wang Zhibo

Jiang Zhi: Life / Wang Zhibo

Aranya Art Center

Left: Jiang Zhi, The Gift (still), 2013 - 2014. 4-channel video (color, silent)
1:04 min. 
0:28 min.
0:32 min.
1:20 min.
© Jiang Zhi. Courtesy of the artist

Right: Wang Zhibo, Optimism (detail), 2023. Oil and acrylic on canvas. 111 × 106 cm
Photography Andrea Rossetti. © Wang Zhibo. Courtesy of the artist and Kiang Malingue

March 14, 2024
Jiang Zhi: Life
Wang Zhibo
March 17–June 30, 2024
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Aranya Art Center
Aranya Gold Coast Community, Beidaihe New District

T +86 335 782 5290

Jiang Zhi: Life
We long for life’s generosity, fear the bitterness of her impermanence and realizations in her name. The writer George Eliot considered art to be the nearest thing to life; it is a mode of amplifying experience and extending our contact with our fellow men beyond the bounds of our personal lot. Using Life as the exhibition title does not suggest an escape from daily routines, but instead reveals bits and pieces of everyday life from which to discover new possibilities within.

Since the early days of his career in the 1990s, Jiang Zhi has focused his lens on everyday life. The artist subtly captures the various ongoing aspects of life amid its trials and tribulations. These works concern forgiveness, drawing inspiration from others, the notion of time and one’s resistance to it, as well as how to save love from dying. Jiang Zhi’s art practice is at once elegant and down to earth, passionate and serene, profound and simple, subtle and forthright. The works in the exhibition Life retain the complexity of their contexts, presenting a gentle and colloquial texture. The unique exhibition space at Aranya Art Center will allow the works in the different galleries to connect and resonate with one another. The recurring elements in this exhibition and its rhythmic ebb and flow aim to mimic RIFF (Repeated Interval Functions) in music theory, marking an inevitable outcome from the artist’s continuous practice, which reflect the notions of extension and repetition. The artist consistently discovers and regenerates themes and forms from his works of art.

During the exhibition, Jiang Zhi looks forward to collaborating with the audience, encouraging visitors to whistle on a leaf and take the work Name (2024) with them to their future destinations; they anticipate an embodied presence, to fill in the long waited absence in A Peace Unsettled (2013); in the meditation room, visitors may respond to apologetic voices from their hearts; or read the comforting words suspended in the air as they look upwards.

This exhibition is organized by Wenjie Sun, guest curator and Jiang Ruoyu, curatorial assistant at Aranya Art Center. Location: Galleries one through five.

Wang Zhibo
Chinese artist Wang Zhibo’s first institutional solo exhibition focuses on four of her iconic motifs: human figures, snowmen, wood grain, and fabric patterns. This exhibition marks the first attempt to juxtapose these ostensibly disparate formal lexicons, revealing an internal logic that ties the artist’s multiple lines of work together.

In Wang’s pictures, bodies and figures do not refer to specific subjects, but stand in as “objects with shape,” exuding a still-life-like presence. The artist is interested in rendering the ethos embedded within these forms, which resonates with her interest in portraying the snowman: a superficial, universal, yet amorphous artificial being that serves as a conduit for humans to project their emotions and creativity.

Gradually, the various geometrical patterns that used to envelope the shapes and their backgrounds begin to take center stage, acquiring a strong sense of agency and subjectivity. They are not pure abstract languages, but come from specific sources and fulfill precise purposes: the meticulously rendered patterns and folds of the fabric in the three paintings from the Unmanned series suggest temporal and spatial dimensions that have been calculated rationally, while the superimposed wood grain further disintegrates the objects and bodies they cover. As these diverse images and painterly techniques overlap, compress and blend, Wang’s threads weave together and resonate into cacophonous and viscous pictures of contemporary life.

This exhibition is organized by Damien Zhang, director of Aranya Art Center, and exhibition coordinator Wu Yiyang. Location: Gallery zero.

Media contact: Gao Liangjiao, gaoliangjiao [​at​] aranya.cc / T +86 138 1143 1757.

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Aranya Art Center
March 14, 2024

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