XU ZHEN® is one of China’s most significant artists and activists. His recent work centres on sculptural installations, video and performances that challenge cultural assumptions, question social taboos and comment on the idea of art as a commodity.
The exhibition includes monumental sculpture European Thousand-Armed Classical Sculpture 2014 and celebrates the international debut of "Hello" 2018–19 – a Corinthian column-like snake that watches and follows visitors as they move through the gallery.
Xu Zhen (b 1977, Shanghai) is a leading figure among China’s younger generation of artists. This is the first major solo exhibition of his work in Australia and brings together early videos with more recent works, including paintings, tapestries and monumental sculptures.
Interested in how cultural and financial value circulates around the world, Xu Zhen combines elements from many cultures, examining the effects of globalisation with often humorous or unsettling effect.
In 2009, Xu Zhen established MadeIn Company, a factory- like cultural corporation that plays on the phrase ‘Made in China’. MadeIn Company enabled Xu Zhen to increase the scale of his artistic production and curate exhibitions. In 2013, MadeIn Company launched the brand XU ZHEN®, interrogating the way in which art and artists are commodified by a contemporary global art market.
Xu Zhen’s playful approach to artmaking and reconfiguration of cultural forms reveals the preconceptions and prejudices that exist between different parts of the world. His work engages with the economic forces that shape our lives.