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Edouard Malingue Gallery(馬凌畫廊)
2019.05.19 Sun - 2019.06.30 Sun
Opening Exhibition
2202, 2879 Longteng Avenue, Xuhui District, 200232 Shanghai 上海市徐汇区龙腾大道2879号2202单元
+86 21 6468 2389
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Healthier, Simpler, Wiser
Edouard Malingue Gallery Shanghai
[Press Release]

Edouard Malingue Gallery Shanghai announces its new group exhibition, “Healthier, Simpler, Wiser.” The exhibition brings together three highly reputed mid-career Chinese artists: Hu Xiangqian from Guangdong, Lai Chih-Sheng from Taipei, and Kwan Sheung Chi from Hong Kong. Each will present a work newly commissioned by the gallery, together with a selection of recent works. While their practices are different in character, medium, and conceptual method, the artists are united by their concision, poetic quality, and constant search for the essential meaning of art.

Hu Xiangqian’s work evokes a sense of strong will. His art-making originates from a natural desire to use the body and take action, yet he never bows to the corrupting side of such desire. His work falls between artistic performance and athleticism, and thus lies beyond the boundaries of a certain aesthetic form or a definition of a certain win-lose logic. To a large extent, his artistic mission is to make himself healthier in both a bodily and spiritual sense, and to lead us to do so as well. Hu’s new work for this exhibition is inspired by one of his personal interests: watching internet videos of people building houses using traditional methods. He once said that he’s never wanted to build his own house. He never even tidies up the places he lives. To him, the living space is always temporary. But after a life of moving between places over the past decade, he started to reconsider how places and spaces may influence him. He found that he could never imagine himself relocating to a foreign place, but, like most Chinese people of his generation, in order to search for a life and a career he had to leave his hometown. The affection for home and the aspiration to explore the world became a dilemma, and, in a funny way, watching people building houses on the internet dissolved that dilemma. As a result, Hu plans to appropriate the skills he learned from all these videos and build a structure in the gallery space, as a way of getting closer to the struggle in his mind.

Before attending art school, Lai Chih-Sheng worked for years as a mason. After graduation, he got involved in the business of video production, again for many years. The technical influences of these work experiences on his current art practice may be obvious, but what’s more important is how it influenced his distinction between making/producing and creating: people may make/produce utilitarian and visually appealing things, but they can only create their perspectives on these things in art. With his new work for this exhibition, Lai raised this question: in an art exhibition, what deserve to be expelled, and what need to stay? He proposes to restructure the rainwater pipes that are originally located in one side of the gallery space and extend them to reach the central area of the space. The rain water would then flow into a water storage barrel, before it is expelled to outside of the building. Lai’s intervention will not change how the rainwater come and go, but only create a short period of time when the rainwater stops-by in the exhibition and eventually leave traces with the dirt that it carries.


The work of Kwan Sheung Chi shines with wisdom, but it never agrees to “get success.” Critics have analyzed how his work proposes to reconsider the criteria of success and failure. At the beginning of his career, he proudly claimed to be an “unsuccessful artist.” However, as his career developed smoothly, his aspiration to be an “unsuccessful artist” was proven unsuccessful. After that, he could only try his best to keep a distance from all the “correct ways” of being an artist. Even that is difficult to achieve … he doesn’t want to live the life of a professional artist, and yet he still feels like accepting some opportunities to do art. The dilemma here is that he only aims to find the best way of living his life, and the way a professional artist should live does not seem good to him. Meanwhile, art is still an essential part of a good life. According to this logic, we may assume that Kwan’s purpose in making art is not about making a glorious career or creating good art in the art historical sense; his purpose is to make use of each opportunity offered by art to identify, interpret, and explore how to act wiser when facing all sorts of challenges in life.