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pages torn from magazines or

things in shops. More interestingly

though, Zhang often uses a

camera that he carries with him

everyday to capture images he

wants to paint.

Zhang Huan

(1965)

Zhang's works are both highly

personal and politicised, dealing

with complex issues of identity,

spiritualism, vulnerability, and

transgression. His practice

focuses on no one particular

media but rather incorporates a

wide variety of tactics – from

performance to photography,

installation, sculpture, and

painting -- utilising each method

for its physical and symbolic

associations. This unique

approach to making reinforces

the interconnectivity of the

concepts and recurrent motifs

running throughout of Zhang's

work, and mirrors an underlying

sentiment of shared human

experience and bond.

Zhang Hui

(1967)

Zhang graduated from Beijing's

Central Drama Academy in 1986

and was a leading figure in the

collaborative artistic activities of

the "Post Sense: Sensibility"

Group of the late 1990s, together

with other established artists such

as Liu Wei, Zhu Yu and Qiu Zhijie.

Zhang's oeuvre explores the

space where the normal and the

abnormal, reality and the

subconscious meet. With his

training in stage and set design, it

is not surprising to see the

consistent reference to

theatricality and spatial awareness

in Zhang's oeuvre. In his recent

works, Zhang continues his

performative exploration of time

and space. Over the years, Zhang

has participated extensively in

exhibitions around the world,

including 'Farewell to

Postcolonialism: the Third

Guangzhou Triennial, Guangdong

Museum of Art, Guangzhou,

China, 2008; 'Partial Zones', Long

March Space, Beijing, China

(solo), 2007; 'Buzz…,' Multimedia

performance, Taipei Museum of

Art, Kao-Chung Museum of Art,

Taipei, Taiwan, 2005.

Zhang Jiebai

(1980)

Now living and working in Beijing,

Zhang graduated from Paris'

renowned Ecole des Beaux-Arts

in 2008. Despite his youth, Zhang

has already gained international

recognition, with several solo

shows in Geneva and Paris even

before graduation. The most

salient characteristic of Zhang's

paintings is their haunting pallor.

With a restrained palette of greys

and whites, Zhang's deliberately

muted works strike a delicate

balance between abstract and

representational.

Zhang Peili

(1957)

Widely regarded as the "father of

Chinese video art", Zhang was the

first Chinese artist to create a video

art work in 1988, taping himself

washing a chicken, over and over

again, as an example of the

absurdities of modern China. His

works is often infused with sharp

social and political commentaries.

Another well known piece“Water:

Standard Pronunciation,” tapes a

former television news broadcaster

reading all the words in a Chinese

dictionary that start with water into

the camera like a newscast. The

piece was widely viewed as a

critique of the official news media in

China and how the nation’s

broadcasters jabber endlessly

without saying much, yet the

viewer is awash in an ocean of

words.

Zhang Wei

(1985)

Born in Inner Mongolia, 1985, he

currently lives and works in

Hangzhou. Graduated from

Chinese academy of fine arts with

a master‘s degree. His work

includes paintings and installation

works, which focus on the

similarities and differences of

various performance media.

Zhang Zhen Xue

(1982)

One of the rising stars from the

new generation of Chinese artists,

Zhang graduated from Sichuan

Fine Arts Academy, specialising in

oil painting. Zhang has had a

number of exhibitions across

China and was awarded the John

Moores New Painting Prize in

2010.

Zhao Xuebing

(1967)

Zhao started painting at an early

age but it was after spending

seven years living and working in

Paris (2002-07) and New York

(2007-09) that his international

recognition really took off. During

this period, Zhao exhibited in a

number of biennales and

institutions including the Salon de

Montrouge (France, 2006), the

Senlis Biennale of contemporary

art (France, 2007), and Pierogi

Gallery New York (USA, 2008).

Zhao is best known for his

masterful representation of light

and dexterity on lines.

Zhao Zhao

(1982)

A graduate from the oil painting

department at Xinjiang Institute of

Arts, Zhao quickly realised that his

aesthetic language is best

expressed through performance.

He understands art as a

"performative, gestural way to

provoke as well as mediate

alternative realities in pursuit of

new subjectivities." Zhao's first

performance piece was

conceptualised while he was still

an art student in Xinjiang. Since

then, he has exhibited in

numerous galleries and

institutions around the world.

What sets Zhao apart from his

peers is the diversity of his skills -

it is almost impossible to define

Zhao's oeuvre in terms of a

certain style or medium.

Zhen Xu

(1977)

Born in 1977, Xu graduated from

a technical college (Shanghai Art

& Design Academy) in 1996,

turned his back on the traditional

art education system and moved

to Beijing to immerse himself in its

flourishing art scene. He returned

to Shanghai after a year of living

in Beijing, and in 1998, he co-

founded the “bizarre”, not-for-

profit, BizArt Centre, selling works

to fund other non-marketable art

projects. The first of its kind in

China, BizArt instantly became a

hub for emerging artists; in Xu’s

continuing parody of corporate

identity and business ethos, all

marketing and PR materials were

deliberately glossy and

“commercial”. At the age of 24,

Xu became the youngest-ever

Chinese artist to participate in the

Venice Biennale (2001). In the

ensuing years leading up to the

Beijing Olympics (2008) when the

Chinese cultural system saw its

most dizzying acceleration, Xu’s

projects became ever more

flamboyant and astounding.

MadeIn Company was launched

in 2009 when Xu Zhen,

the artist, became the company’s

CEO. This deliberate departure

from his personal artistic identity

could be seen as a rejection of

the persona-driven contemporary

art world; at the same time, it

acknowledges his constant

principle that his art has always

been a collaborative effort. Taking

his concept of creation to even

newer heights, MadeIn Company

launched the “Xu Zhen” brand in

late 2013. Several of these new

works were produced for the mid-

career retrospective currently at

Beijing’s Ullens Center for

Contemporary Art, aptly entitled

Xu Zhen: A MadeIn Company

Production (19 January – 20 April

2014).

Zheng Chongbin

(1961)

For over twenty years, Zheng has

been exploring two issues that

mesh in his works: how can the

possibilities of ink as a medium

be extended, and how can a new

expression of depth and structure

be incorporated into ink painting?

In 1986 he discovered a pair of

materials that, in combination with

ink, brought new visual interest as

well as new technical possibilities

to ink painting: white acrylic paint

and fixer. In addition to adopting

unorthodox media, Zheng

Chongbin has been using the

paibi or broad brush in place of

traditional brushes. He has found

that using the broad brush

changed his painting behavior: "in

terms of understanding space,

qiyun (spirit resonance) is

essential." Over the years, he has

found inspiration in both early

Chinese landscape compositions,

and in Western contemporary and

Baroque figure painters, as well

as abstract expressionism.

Zheng Guogu

(1970)

Zheng is a versatile conceptual

artist who works with a variety of

media, including photography,

installation, painting and

sculpture. His artistic output

dwells on the media,

consumerism and the rapid

changes in China. What is

interesting about Zheng is that he

belongs to a generation, which

grew up with Coca-Cola, Kung Fu

movies, pop music, and TV

games. Different from those older

generation in the uncertainty of

Cultural Revolution of the 70s,

and in the optimistic Utopia of the

80s, there is no ideology and

idealization among this new

generation. His sculptural work

often combines enduring and

imperious materials with

unorthodox and fragile

substances, the physicality of his

forms operating as both tactile

and symbolic matter. His

sculptures often make reference

to China's fast expanding

economy in relation to its

millennia-old history, humorously

posing the transient icons of

commodity culture and frivolous

indulgence as indestructible anti-

ergonomic ballasts.

Zheng Haozhong

(1985)

Zheng graduated from Beijing's

Central Academy of Fine Arts in

2008 and was awarded the John

Moores Prize (Painting) from

Liverpool University in 2014.

Zheng’s paintings are at once

figurative and abstract, and should

be viewed as a series with each

painting expressing just one

specific feeling or idea. It is through

experiencing the entire sequence of

works in an exhibition that the

viewer can truly appreciate the

artist’s innermost thoughts.

Working directly from real-life

subjects, Zheng typically spends

days with his models and a crucial

part of his creative process is the

meticulous filming and

documentation of his work-in-

progress, allowing the audience to

fully immerse themselves in the

artist’s mind.