Xu Zhen and Ji Dachun at the Ullens Centre for Contemporary Art

To start the 2014 programme, the Ullens Centre for Contemporary Art is showcasing two major solo exhibitions by Chinese artists Xu Zhen and Ji Dachun.

A MadeIn Company Production by Xu Zhen is a mid-career retrospective which explores the artist’s wide range of practices, showcasing 50 different installation pieces, ten videos, 40 painting and collage works, and several performance pieces. The exhibition title refers to Xu’s “contemporary art creation company” MadeIn Company, which was founded in 2009 as a testament to the relationship between Xu’s individual practice, his involvement in the Shanghai art scene and his rejection of a persona-driven contemporary art world.

Pieces on display include Shouting, a 1998 video depicting the artist crying out in pain only to be met with the sequential shock and dismissal of passers-by, and a new commission for the UCCA lobby where Xu literally and figuratively juxtaposes East and West by placing Hellenistic and Buddhist sculptures side by side.

Likewise, Ji Dachun: Without a Home is a retrospective which spans several key moments in the artist’s career and also includes a new series of works made specifically for this exhibition. Ji is best known for his surreal, satirical critiques of contemporary China, realised through his trademark characters which alternate between a figurative mode and abstract landscapes and still lifes. The postmodern attitudes in his work and his appropriation of traditional Chinese painting reflect an ongoing East-West dialectic. Ji Dachun: Without a Home aims to reveal Ji’s artistic evolution over the past two decades.


Xu Zhen The struggle of man against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting (2010)


Xu Zhen Physique of Consciousness (2011)


Ji DaChun Intertwined (2013)

Xu Zhen: A MadeIn Company Production and Ji Dachun: Without a Home open on January 19, 2014 at the Ullens Centre for Contemporary Art, Beijing.

by Louise Lui


About The Author

Glass Online fashion, arts and culture writer

Related Posts