White Rabbit Gallery -
Exhibitions

Smash Palace

Smash Palace

8 01.03–04.08.2013

Smash Palace

An Artists’-eye View Of A Fracturing China

In the metastasising mega-cities where more than half of China’s people live, change is the only constant. As residential districts make way for gleaming skyscrapers, social structures are being shaken by overcrowding, isolation, and the dog-eat-dog struggle to get ahead. As new possibilities emerge, old ways and old certainties are breaking down.

Under Mao, the Communist Party set out to “smash the Four Olds”: customs, culture, habits and ideas. Now the “new China” they built is itself under assault, and not only from growing wealth and freedoms. Greed, corruption, and official heavy-handedness are generating anger and anxiety. The immovable edifice of Party rule—depicted literally in Wang Guofeng’s huge photographs of Maoist monuments—is starting to show cracks.

Smash Palace showcases the reactions of China’s best artists to the shocks of the new century. Some question the solidity of the status quo; others lift the shining masks and find monsters beneath. Some artists find reality so absurd that fantasy or mockery seems the only proper response; others seek anchors in the same Olds the hard-liners were so determined to erase.

Cheng Dapeng and Zhou Jie create surreal cities using cutting-edge 3D printing and traditional ceramics. The weather balloon of Zhou Xiaohu’s Even in Fear inflates almost to bursting point, then shrinks to a wizened sack. Tu Pei-Shih’s teeming animations depict history as a path to confusion and chaos. Tzeng Yong-Ning sees his furious scribbles of red ballpoint as a direct link between traditional calligraphy and contemporary chaos. Zhang Tingqun’s intricate abstractions call to mind digital networks, but they were inspired by the cracks in old china.

GF
Jin Feng Appeals without Words, 2006 photographic pigment print
120 x 1500 cm
Bai Yiluo Recycling, 2008 mixed mediA
320 x 250 x 200 cm
Shyu Ruey-Shiann Traveller’s Wings, 2011 metal, motors, copper plates
dimensions variable
Bai Yiluo Illumination, 2011 antique wood and metal lamps
600 x 600 cm
1F
Zong Ning Dead Bird, Jie, 2008, Jie, 2008, Insane Desire, Slum, all 2008 inkjet prints on rice paper
80 x 60 cm each
Inter-Nation, 2006 transparency on lightbox
136 x 406 x 8 cm
2010–2011.9.10, 2011 acrylic and pen on linen
300 x 200 cm
Cheng Dapeng Wonderful City, 2011-12 resin 3D prints
960 x 200 x 80 cm
Cola Landscape II, 2011 pen on canvas
200 x 200 cm
Tu Pei-Shih Adventures in Mount Yu 01, 2010 HD video projection
4’50”
Adventures in Mount Yu 05, 2011 HD video projection
7’00”
2F
Jin Shi Mini Home, 2005 mixed media
140 x 120 x 195 cm
Wang Guofeng Ideality 1–5, 7, 8, 2006 pigment prints on Hahnemühle paper
dimensions variable
Gao Ge Order 2006.06, 2006.08, 2006.09, 2006 ink, pencil, propylene on yunlong paper
90 x 90 cm each
Zhou Jie CBD, 2010 porcelain, rice
400 x 400 x 80 cm
XU ZHEN® Under Heaven 20121018, 2012 oil on canvas, braced aluminium board
200 x 140 x 20 cm
Liao Guohe Drugs, Poisons, Good Living and the General Secretary, 2011 acrylic on canvas
65 x 80 cm
Fifth-Round Thinking About Bananas and Their Rights—Tell A Smartass Chicken Joke to the Party, 2011 acrylic on canvas
192 x 218 cm
Ah! Secretary Pork-Liver Monster, Save the Country, Save the People, Prevent People from Being Heartless, 2011 acrylic on canvas
65 x 80 cm
Ah! Secretary: Elf and Wukong [Monkey], 2011 acrylic on canvas
65 x 80 cm
Chairman “Who”, If You Marry the General Secretary’s Wife, You Will Become Chairman Hu, 2011 acrylic on canvas
65 x 80 cm
3F
Zhou Xiaohu Even in Fear, 2011 motor, weather balloon
dimensions variable
He An What Makes me Understand What I Know, 2009 neon-light building signage
dimensions variable