Zhang Xiaogang


Zhang Xiaogang
b. 1958, Kunming, Yunnan
Oil painter
Zhang Xiaogang’s oeuvre constitutes one of the most significant contributions to the language of Chinese oil painting since the mid 1980s. After graduating from the Sichuan Academy of Fine Arts in Chongqing in 1982 (see art academies), Zhang founded the Southwest Art Research Group (Xinan yishu qunti) together with artist Pen Dehai and Mao Xuhui. The conceptual research of these artists carried more surrealist and less political overtones than groups in Hong Kong and Beijing, exploring human desire in a period when the once-suppressed humanism was taking up new meanings and relevance. In Zhang’s early work Eternal Life (1988), depicting minority people surrounded by animals, emerges the concern for the purity of simple and rustic life as opposed to that of the ‘modern man’. In his two most famous series of paintings, Amnesia and Memory and Bloodline: The Big Family (both begun in 1993), Zhang captures the historical dimension of a rising consumer society by adopting the format and visual texture of the family album and by portraying ordinary Chinese persons in a form reminiscent of portraiture typical of the late Qing and the early Republican period. The smooth, brushless quality of the finish and the placement of the figures, often wearing Mao suits, on dim flattening backgrounds are distorted by the veering strokes of vivid colour and by the addition of physical blemishes to the faces, an expression of the struggle of the individual in the face of the power of collective and family ties, which is represented by the ubiquitous red line linking the various figures in the paintings. Zhang’s work has been shown worldwide. Among other venues he has figured in: Mao Goes Pop at the Sydney Museum of Contemporary Art (1993); Sao Paolo Biennale (1994); Venice Biennale (1995); Inside Out: New Chinese Art, Asia Society, New York (1998); and Paris-Pekin, Espace Cardin, Paris (2002).
(1997).
Faces and Bodies of the Middle Kingdom (exhibition catalogue). Prague: Galerie Rudolfinum.
Chang, Tsong-zung and He, Xiangning (2002). ‘Zhang Xiaogang—Between Reality and Illusion’. Museum talk on 21 November 2002; partly available at http://www.Chinese-art.com, ‘Artist of the Week’ (9 January 2003).
Gao, Minglu (1998). ‘From Elite to Small Man: The Many Faces of a Transitional Avant-Garde in Mainland China’. In idem (ed.), Inside Out: New Chinese Art (exhibition catalogue). Berkeley: University of California Press.
Pollack, Barbara (1998). ‘PoMaoism’. Art & Auction (March): 110–15.
Zhang, Xiaogang (1997). Bloodline: The Big Family (exhibition catalogue). Beijing: Gallery of the Central Academy of Fine Arts.
BEATRICE LEANZA

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Zhang Xiaogang — (張曉剛 / 张晓刚) (born 1958) is a contemporary Chinese symbolist and surrealist painter. He has made a Bloodline series of paintings, which are often monochromatic, stylized portraits of Chinese people, usually with large, dark pupiled eyes, posed in… …   Wikipedia

  • Zhang Xiaogang — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Zhang. Zhang Xiaogang (張曉剛 / 张晓刚), né en 1958 à Kunming, est un artiste contemporain chinois, peintre symboliste surréaliste. Il vit à Sichuang et Beijing. Il est célèbre pour ses séries Bloodline, portraits… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Xiaogang — may refer to:People with the surname Xiaogang: *Feng Xiaogang, a Chinese film director *Ye Xiaogang, a Chinese composer of contemporary classical music *Zhang Xiaogang, a contemporary Chinese symbolist and surrealist painter *Yu Xiaogang, a… …   Wikipedia

  • Xiaogang — est un prénom chinois. Il est entre autres porté par : Feng Xiaogang, réalisateur chinois de films Yu Xiaogang, professeur chinois, connu pour être écologiste Zhang Xiaogang, un artiste contemporain chinois Portail des langues …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Zhang Xin (artist) — Zhang Xin (zh cp|c=张新|p=Zhāng Xīn; born 1953) is a contemporary Chinese romanticism and abstract painter. She has made a Dream of Flight series of paintings, which are often monochromatic, stylized souls of abstract flora, usually with cracked… …   Wikipedia

  • Zhang — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom. Le xian de Zhang (漳县) est une subdivision administrative de la province du Gansu en Chine. Zhang est le nom d un astérisme utilisé en astronomie chinoise …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Zhang Yimou — This is a Chinese name; the family name is Zhang. Zhang Yimou 张艺谋 Zhang Yimou honored at the press conference (2005) …   Wikipedia

  • Zhang Ziyi — ▪ 2006       Young Chinese film actress Zhang Ziyi continued her rise to international stardom in 2005 with her leading role in the epic romance Memoirs of a Geisha, the motion picture adaptation of Arthur Golden s best selling 1997 novel.… …   Universalium

  • Chinese art — Chinese jade ornament with dragon and phoenix design, late Spring and Autumn Period (722 BC 482 BC) …   Wikipedia

  • History of Chinese art — Chinese art is art that, whether ancient or modern, originated in or is practiced in China or by Chinese artists or performers. Early so called stone age art dates back to 10,000 BC, mostly consisting of simple pottery and sculptures. This early… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.