Exhibition “Culture• Mind• Becoming”, Collateral Event of Chinese Art at the 55th Venice Art Biennale 2013
Curator(s) Karlyn De Jongh (The Netherlands and Italy), Huang Du (China), Yang Shinyi (Taiwan and China), Danilo Eccher (Italy)
Duration 2013-06-01 ~ 2013-11-24
Opening 2013-06-01 ~ 2013-11-24
Palazzo Mora(Strada Nuova 30121 Venezia, Italy 340 5300437), Palazzo Marcello

“Culture• Mind• Becoming”, Collateral Event of Chinese Art at the 55th Venice Art Biennale 2013

Global Art Center Foundation Appointed Asia Art Center as the Exclusive Strategic Partner in Asia

Jointly Organized Collateral Event of the 55th International Art Exhibition


“Culture. Mind. Becoming”


The 55th International Art Exhibition titled Il Palazzo Enciclopedico (The Encyclopedic Palace) is opening to the public from 1st June to 24th November 2013. Global Art Center Foundation (GACF), leading art organization in Europe, had invited Asia Art Center to jointly launch “Culture· Mind· Becoming” – an exhibition of outstanding art by a group of Chinese artists that aims to juxtapose the cultural impact, appropriation, reflection, and reinvention existing in the Chinese culture through the lens of globalization. Several important artists recommended by Asia Art Center including Chuang Che, Yang Chihung, and Li Chen, are highly recognized by the foundation and biennale selection committee. The exhibition will be on view at Palazzo Mora and Palazzo Marcello. Under the holistic context of “Encyclopedic Palace”, the exhibition aims to re-discover a panorama of artistic presentations that are imbued with the “Spirit of the East”.


The Global Art Center Foundation (GACF) encourages growth in art and architecture by organizing academic symposia, publishing literature, holding exhibitions, and coordinating with various arts and cultural institutions. It aims to heighten awareness about novel philosophical themes in contemporary art development, and to further the dialogue between Eastern and Western arts and cultural disciplines. The GACF has carried out joint projects with renowned artists such as Anthony Gormley, Louise Bourgeois, Marina Abramovic, Carl Andre, Hermann Nitsch, Joseph Kosuth, Wolfgang Laib, Tatsuo Miyajima, and Lee Ufan.


In a furthered attempt to promote understanding of Eastern art, GACF appointed Asia Art Center as the exclusive strategic partner in Asia responsible for inviting, recommending, and selecting representative Asian artists and architects for international events such as the Venice Art Biennale and Venice International Architecture Biennale. This partnership aims to outline the Eastern contemporary art structure, as well as to raise awareness about Asian artists and architects through international exhibitions, promoting a comparative discussion between Eastern and Western art and architecture at various levels. This collaboration serves to become a cross-cultural and international platform for art.


This year, The GACF organizes “Culture. Mind. Becoming”– an official Collateral Event of Venice Art Biennale that features Chinese contemporary art by ways of juxtaposing Eastern and Western cultures. The exhibition consists of three different but related curatorial concepts: “Re-discover” by independent curator Karlyn De Jongh from the Netherlands, “Ingrandimento” curated by Chinese notable independent curator Huang Du and Yang Shinyi, and “Fang Lijun: A Cautionary Vision” organized by Italian curator Danilo Eccher, current director of Galleria Civica d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea (GAM) at Turin city in Italy.


The first section “Re-discover” is curated by Karlyn De Jongh, a notable independent curator from the Netherlands, echoing the “Spirit of the East” that Asia Art Center embraces. These artists belong to a generation that witnessed the beginning and early transformation of a new era and along with it, the development of Chinese art history. As the Chinese contemporary arts faced the impact and influence of Western arts, the artists have become conscious of an imperative to rediscover their own cultural roots as the deep nutritive sources for their authentic expressions. These artists represent the so-called “Spirit of the East,” and their works are imbued with this concept! The works of art embody a strong national character and locality, yet at the same time show an unprecedented openness to cultural versatility. These artists search for a union of mankind and objects with nature. This stream of thought relies on continuous experimentation and freedom of expression, and will eventually elicit an independent vernacular in an expressive language that represents the Eastern aesthetics. With the 55th annual Venice Art Biennale in 2013 theme being “Encyclopedia Palace”, “Spirit of the East” is certainly conjoined to the Biennale as it explores the cultural and conceptual aspects of the theme.


This section invites 19 celebrated Chinese contemporary artists to exhibit their artwork. The foundation is especially approved of acclaimed Taiwanese artists recommended by Asia Art Center: Chuang Che, Yang Chihung, and Li Chen. Chuang Che, following in the footsteps of French-based Chinese artists as Zao Wou-Ki and Chu Teh-Chun, joined the “Fifth Moon Group” and promoted the combination of “Chinese literati painting tradition” and “Western abstract expressionism.” He contributes much to the diverse contemporary style of modern Taiwanese painting. Yang Chihung, well known in the art scenes of Taiwan and New York, although the artist mainly uses pigment and acrylic to paint, one can still discern his creative idea, composition, and brush strokes are of Eastern culture. Li Chen, a renowned sculptor who accomplished a style which has fully liberated itself from the confines of tradition by incorporating feelings of self-mindfulness and interpretations of Chinese classics from the Buddhist and Taoist traditions, blended with contemporary thought, evincing a remarkably refreshing and natural affect. The group exhibition also includes Cai Guoqiang’s work of gunpowder on paper, Zhang Huan’s ash on linen representation, Xu Bing’s white Phoenix inspired by Chinese legend, Zhou Chunya’s Peach Blossoms Series, Ying Tianqi’s empathy for historical ruins in China, and Huang Zhiyang’s work using ink and mineral color on silk, Hua Qing’s daringly bold strokes and Han Tao’s installation tower as metaphor for our precarious living conditions , they all demonstrate unique contemporary characters of Eastern culture.


The second section “Ingrandimento” is curated by Chinese renowned independent curator Huang Du and Yang Shinyi, co-organized by Beautiful Asset in Beijing. “Ingrandimento” invited some 19 artists to participate, including the famous Abstractionist painter Mao Lizi, the famed artist Xu Bing who presented his new multimedia Work On Site, Zhang Huan with his film To Raise the Water Level in a Fishpond. For the curator, “Ingrandimento” does not mean a mere microscopic enlargement of the overall expression of contemporary Chinese arts, nor does it intend to create its own new descriptive jargon, but to use a little to express a lot, as the means of expressing and realizing the contemporary Chinese artistic aesthetic in its grandest variety.


The third section “Fang Lijun-A Cautionary Vision” is curated by Danilo Eccher, the current director of Galleria Civica d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea (GAM) at Turin city in Italy, and co-organized by Art of Two Centuries gallery in Beijing. Fang Lijun, the most prominent figure of post ‘89 China New Art, will showcase his most recent 11 works in the Venice Art Biennale. Bounding up in the themes of complexity, identity and size give form to dreams and bring forward the most unspeakable visions. The quality of recognizability is achieved by the artist through both multiplicity and particularity, the crowd and the individual, the mass and the singular. His work represents a way of reinterpreting the complexity of reality, not only through the mechanisms of simplification and schematization, but also according to the criteria of sum and multiplication, outlining pileups and visual gridlock, compressing images and amplifying perspectives. Behind the childlike imagery there is the artist’s calm and balanced narrative, examining an individual’s cautionary vision in the reality of the world.


Through collaboration with GACF, Asia Art Center has been actively establishing connections with European, Middle Eastern, and American art. In addition to promoting Eastern culture overseas and raising international curators, media, and collectors’ awareness, Asia Art Center is also responsible for bringing outstanding artists onto the world stage. In this major collateral event organized by GACF for the 55th Venice Art Biennale – “Culture· Mind· Becoming”, Asia Art Center plays an important role in terms of recommending important Asian artists, inviting distinguished European and Chinese independent curators, and selecting co-organizations. This exhibition will surely set a milestone for Taiwanese art in the Western world, and representative artists Chuang Che, Yang Chihung, and Li Chen’s innovative and inspiring works are foreseen to spark further interdisciplinary debate.


Cai Guo Qiang: Deer and Pine Tree

Painting a Bird

The Dong Qichang Project-No.31

Green Rock and Splendid Cloud

Xu Bing: Phoenix

Shen Keling:Rhapsody·Indistinct

Shen Keling:Rhapsody-No.2

Li Chen:Soul Guardians-Lord of Wind

Zhou Chunya:Peach Blossoms Series – Flower Blooms, Flower Fades, Year after Year

Yang Chihung: Majestic Breath

Ying Tianqi:Nirvana

Zhang Guolong:Angle No.10

Huang Zhiyang:Three Marks Formation

Qu Qianmei:Golden Mean

Huang Gang: First Snow

Zhang Huan: Naval Battle-No.2

Zhang Fangbai:Standing Alone-No.2

Zheng Chongbin: Five Definitions

Hua Qing:Line Sketching Practice-No.2

Hua Qing:Destiny-The 12 Zodiac Animals

Han Tao: Rainbow Tower

Li Xiangqun: Spiritual Practitioner

Huang Hsin-Chien:Still Life-No.1

Mao Lizi: Lotus-20110801

Geng Yini: The Fault

Fan Angel:The secret garden of angel-No.8

Yang Fan: Waterfall

Liu Zhengyong: The Pain of A Country

Hou Xiaowei: The Deserted Yard -No.2

Meng Site: Rainbow Hall

Su ke:Cataract-No.35

Zhang Wei:The Unknown woman’s Portrait Series-No.3

Wen Wu:Self-Deconsruction

Huang Xuebin:Salary

Chaile Travel:Nomadic Travel

Zhang Kai:Leave My World Here

Fang Lijun: 2007.5.1

Fang Lijun: 2011 Autumn

Fang Lijun: 2012.12

Fang Lijun: 2011

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