NEW YORK, NY.- Gladstone Gallery
announces an exhibition of new work by Huang Yong Ping. A founding member of the Xiamen Dada group in China during the mid-1980s a movement that espoused the idea that a new life calls for a new art, a new life has no need of art Huang Yong Ping strives to create a new mode of connecting art, politics, and cultural awareness, using art to instigate reform. Drawing on formal and conceptual practices from both Eastern and Western art historical traditions, Huang Yong Ping probes issues of national identity, politics, and social phenomenon to create works that call cultural stereotypes and philosophical narratives into question.
For this exhibition Huang Yong Ping uses taxidermied animals, a material present in his earlier work, to create three installations that explore notions of time, chaos, and the relationship between religion and power. The main gallery space features Circus, a monumental installation composed of a massive wooden hand hovering over a bamboo enclosure, orchestrating a puppet show before fifteen headless animals. The animals gaze upwards at a robed monkey skeleton, inspired by the character Sun WuKong from the classic Chinese novel Journey to the West, who holds in his hand a smaller puppet. The confrontation between an absent mechanical god and his captive audience begs the question of who or what is in control, and invites the viewer to reassess his understanding of relationships both to others and to the world he inhabits. With his presentation of Circus and the two other works on view, Huang Yong Ping meditates on an apocalyptic vision of the worlds end. Lingering in the abstract space where it is possible for time to end and man to cease to exist, the artist creates a theatrical vision of our own destruction, asking what it means to bear witness to the tragedy of humanitys evolution and ruin.
Born in 1954, Huang Yong Ping participated in the seminal exhibition Magiciens de la Terre at Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris in 1989, and represented France at the 1999 Venice Biennale. In 2006, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis organized and premiered his retrospective House of Oracles, which traveled to Mass MoCA in North Adams, Massachusetts, Vancouver Art Gallery, and Ullens Center, Beijing. Other solo exhibitions include: CCA Kitakyushu, Japan; De Appel, Amsterdam; Fondation Cartier pour lArt Contemporain, Paris; Atelier dArtistes de la Ville de Marseille; Astrup Fearnley Museum, Oslo; Barbican Art Gallery, London; and New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York.
Thomas Hirschhorn was born in 1957 in Bern, Switzerland, and now lives and works in Paris. His work has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions including at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Museu d'Art Contemporani, Barcelona; Kunsthaus Zürich; Art Institute of Chicago; Museum Ludwig, Cologne; and Secession, Vienna. In 2003 he created the Musée Précaire Albinet, a temporary "Presence and Production" project in Aubervilliers, France. Additionally, he has taken part in many international group exhibitions, including the 2012 La Triennale at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris; the Swiss Pavilion of the 2011 Venice Biennale with his work Crystal of Resistance, Documenta 11 in Kassel, Germany, where his large-scale public work, Bataille Monument, was on view; Heart of Darkness at the Walker Art Center; and Life on Mars: the 55th Carnegie International. Hirschhorn was the recipient of the Prix Marcel Duchamp in 2000, the Joseph Beuys-Preis in 2004 and the Kurt Schwitters Prize in 2011.