press release

The works of Huang Yong Ping (b. 1954), one of our era’s most acclaimed contemporary artists, have never before been exhibited in Norway. His powerful installations now fill Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art.

An exhibition catalogue will be published.

The Chinese art scene has flourished in recent years, and in the course of a short period, has established itself as an important part of the international artworld. Originally from Xiamen, Huang Yong Ping moved to Paris in 1989 (where he was included in the exhibition Magicien de la Terre in Centre Pompidou), and is considered one of our era’s foremost contemporary artists. He has been a key actor in China’s ‘artistic revolution’, which started in the late 1970s and continues to this day. Early on, Huang Yong Ping broke with accepted Chinese artistic expression and began engaging with Dadaism and the works of artists such as Marcel Duchamp, John Cage and Joseph Beuys. He is most well-known for narrative works combining incongruous forms, objects and materials, which stand out as thought-provoking encounters between the art and philosophical traditions of East and West.

The exhibition PING PONG presents newer works emphasizing the originality in Huang Yong Ping’s artistic practice. These powerful and imposing installations are representative of the definitive themes of his career, and raise questions related to cultural identity, religion and politics, power and conflict. The use of well-known buildings and animal figures invites spectators to engage in reflections of immediate actuality. In several instances the dynamic of these narrative works is constructed through contrasts – for example church/mosque, Christianity/Buddhism/Islam, academic organizations/political interests and power/impotence – all of which underscore the artist’s attempt to avoid fixed ideas about culture and identity. For Ping, culture is a constantly changing entity.

Parallel to this exhibition, Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art is collaborating with Serpentine Gallery in London on a larger project addressing Chinese contemporary art. Part I of the exhibition series ‘China Power Station’ offered an overview of some of our era’s foremost Chinese artists; the exhibition opened at London’s Battersea Power Station in the fall of 2006. ‘China Power Station: Part II’ showcased the youngest generation of Chinese artists, largely influenced by the conceptualist Huang Yong Ping; the exhibition was shown at Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art in the fall of 2007. ‘China Power Station: Part III’ widens the perspective on Chinese contemporary art and will open at MUDAM in Luxembourg on 25 April 2008.

The exhibition ‘Huang Yong Ping – PING PONG’ has been organized in collaboration with Kunsthallen Brandts in Odense and will be shown there from 26 June – 21 September 2008.

Exhibition curators: Gunnar B. Kvaran, Hanne Beate Ueland, Grete Årbu (Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art) and Lene Burkard (Kunsthallen Brandts).

Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art receives generous support from Stiftelsen Thomas Fearnley, Heddy and Nils Astrup, and from Astrup Fearnley AS.

only in german

Huang Yong Ping
Kuratoren: Gunnar B. Kvaran, Hanne Beate Ueland, Grete Arbu, Lene Burkard

Stationen: 26 June - 21 September 2008, Kunsthallen Brandts, Odense