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宋冬

About 宋冬

宋冬,1966年生於中國北京。他從中國先鋒藝術運動中脫穎而出,成為中國當代藝術發展中重要的藝術家。 1989年,宋冬畢業於首都師範大學美術系油畫專業。他從九十年代初開始從事行為、錄像、裝置、攝影、觀念繪畫和戲劇等多媒介的當代藝術創作,並參與策劃當代藝術的展覽和活動。 藝術形式橫跨多個領域,對人類行為短暫性的觀念進行了探索。 他的作品用東方智慧探討生活與藝術的關係,具有國際影響力。 宋冬在世界各地舉辦過個展,也是各種群展的焦點。他曾在紐約現代藝術博物館舉辦個人展覽,曾參加「威尼斯雙年展」「聖保羅雙年展」「伊斯坦布爾雙年展」「利物浦雙年展」「光州雙年展」「亞太三年展」「廣州三年展」「台北雙年展」和「世界影像節」等國際大型藝術展。代表作品有《水寫日記》(1995-今)、《哈氣》(1996)、《印水》(1996)、《撫摸父親》(1997)、《砸碎鏡子》(1999)、《揉上海》(2000)、《吃城市》(2003-今)、及《物盡其用》(2005)和《窮人的智慧》(2005-2011)系列作品等。策劃過的實驗藝術活動包括《野生 1997年驚蟄 始》(1997-1998);《新潮新聞》(2001)等。宋冬於2001年與藝術家尹秀珍一起創造了合作方式「筷道」(THE WAY OF CHOPSTICKS)。2005年與藝術家洪浩、肖昱、劉建華和冷林一起共同創建了集體創作方式的藝術小組「政純辦」(POLIT-SHEER-FORM OFFICE)。 宋冬出生於文化大革命中,面臨資源有限的社會環境。因此,他在藝術創作上常常採用與「公寓藝術」有關的粗陋材料。裝置事件作品《物盡其用》陳列了宋冬母親趙湘源不捨得扔的各種日用物品,他與母親合作探討了存在的本質,以及用於記錄歷史和情感的循環往復的記憶。同時,藝術家對將東西方的對立性融合在一起有著濃厚的興趣。因此,宋冬的作品處於現代與傳統、藝術與生活的縫隙間。宋冬在世界各地都實踐了《吃城市》項目——用餅乾搭建的城市在展覽期間被觀眾一起吃掉。這個可以被觀眾吃掉的作品探討了現代消費主義觀念的相關問題。 宋冬大多數作品都關注藝術的過程而非最終成品,因此也創造了其獨特的媒介和裝置方式。其中最著名的作品之一《水寫日記》是以他特有的方式用水書寫日記,給自己以精神寄託的同時也對外在世界保留了自己的秘密。作品既是一種個體經驗的自我抒發,同時又是在一個公開環境的藝術創作。這樣,藝術家以一種了無痕跡的近似「冥想」的方式探討著道教哲學的種種觀念。雖然他的這些隨寫隨消失的文字在可視的記憶中消逝了,但是它們依然可以通過口述保留在歷史記錄的想象中。作品純粹存在於時間和記憶當中,借此藝術家鼓勵觀眾關注當下。 宋冬曾獲2000年聯合國教科文組織頒發的青年藝術家獎金(UNESCO/ASCHBERG Bursary Laureate)。2006年獲得「韓國光州國際當代藝術雙年展」大獎。2010年度AAC藝術中國年度藝術家裝置新媒體大獎。2011年獲美國舊金山市榮譽證書。 受聘於中央美術學院、北京電影學院、廣州美術學院任客座教授。 宋冬現在是佩斯北京的代理藝術家,生活和工作在北京。

Press Release

  • Song Dong Doing Nothing

    510 West 25th Street, New York

    January 18 - February 16, 2013

    Opening reception: Thursday, January 17, 6 to 8 PM

    Pace is pleased to present Song Dong Doing Nothing, a two-venue exhibition surveying twenty years of work by the Chinese artist Song Dong. The gallery at 510 West 25th Street will focus on Song's recent work, including a new installation related to his projects for Documenta 13 and the Kiev Biennial. The gallery at 534 West 25th Street will feature eighteen of Song's performances, photographs, videos, and installations made between 1994 and 2012.

    Song Dong Doing Nothing is on view at 510 West 25th Street, New York from January 18 through February 16, 2013, and at 534 West 25th Street from January 18 through February 23, with an opening reception for the public on Thursday, January 17, 6 to 8 pm, at both galleries.

    For over two decades, Song Dong has been at the forefront of Chinese contemporary art, embracing performance, installation, video, sculpture, painting, and calligraphy, and often combining mediums within a single work. Using modest, quotidian materials, Song confronts notions of impermanence, the reality of living in contemporary China, ideas of waste and consumption, the transformation of China's urban environment, and the value of self-expression, even when it leaves no trace. Simultaneously poetic and political, personal and global, his work often explores larger social and cultural issues by drawing on deeply intimate, biographical experiences. The title of the exhibition, Song Dong Doing Nothing, references the Taoist concepts of "non-action" and "non-intention," requiring a respect for natural order and a modest, humble way of leading life. Both ideas infuse Song's work and inform his maxim: "That left undone goes undone in vain; that which is done is done still in vain; that done in vain must still be done."

    At 510 West 25th Street, Pace will present the U.S premiere of Doing Nothing Mountains, a landscape of mounds covered with ceramic household tile and collaged with remnants from Chinese homes, including windows, doors, electrical outlets, and doorknobs. The works continue Song’s interest in the “wisdom of the poor”— the resourcefulness of Beijing’s poorest citizens as they create improvisational, sometimes bizarre living spaces to expand their cramped corridors and improve living conditions. A smaller version of the installation was shown at the inaugural Kiev Biennial of Contemporary Art in 2012. A video of Song's installation Doing Nothing Garden, a centerpiece of last summer's Documenta 13 in Kassel, Germany, will also be on view. The work consisted of a twenty-foot-tall hillock in the middle of Kassel's Karlsaue Park. Covered in new weeds and flowers and dotted with neon signs that read "Doing" and "Nothing" in Chinese characters, the hill was actually made from composted trash, reflecting Song's interest in the ability to create something from humble materials, while also addressing ideas of consumption, waste, and regeneration.

    An artist book, published by Hatje Cantz to accompany the Documenta installation, will also be on view. Song wrote a sentence about the act of doing nothing, and had it translated into English by various professional translators, lay speakers, and Google translator. Though the Chinese characters are identical on each page, each translation varies considerably and contains an individual perspective on the value of human activity.

    The gallery at 534 West 25th Street will present a survey of Song Dong’s most important installations and performances. Because many of Song's performances were evanescent and witnessed by almost no one, photography and video became the most important media for their expression. Often personal responses to everyday experiences embedded with absurdity and humor, the works span from 1994 to the present.

    Among the earliest works is Breathing (1996), for which Song lay on the stone pavement of Tianenmen Square and used his own breath to create a pad of ice on freezing ground, allowing himself to make a fleeting personal impact on a site that is a symbol for power of the masses. Song repeated the performance in Houhai, a lake in Beijing, where he breathed on the icy surface for forty minutes but was unable to create a change. The show will also include Throwing a Stone, an ongoing performance that Song began in 1994, in which he picks up a stone randomly, writes on the stone the time that he found it, throws it far away, and walks to find it again, repeating the process until he cannot find it anymore.

    Many of the works on view explore the absurdity of action without tangible reward, including Song Dong Facing the Wall (1999), for which he traveled to India and imitated the Indian Zen monk Dharma, quietly sitting on a bed, facing a wall for ten days. Other works document the ordinary but often forgotten routines of daily life, including Eating Drinking Shitting Pissing Sleeping (1999) and A Pot of Boiling Water (1996), which preserves Song’s daily walk from his home to his mother’s house with water for her tea.

    The exhibition will also include four videos from Song’s series A Blot on the Landscape (2010), for which he constructed “landscapes” out of food. The works reflect Song’s intervention and satire of traditional art, integrating the humble cultural material of food with the elegance of traditional Chinese landscape painting. In this way, material life is combined with spiritual pursuit in a sardonic manner. As Philippe Verge, art historian and director of the Dia Foundation, wrote of Song’s work, “It crystallizes a sense of tradition, calls into play strategies sprung from a history of avant-garde performance, emphasized an aspect of the urban Chinese ‘everyday’ and questions the status and visibility of art and culture in the world today and the strength of the creative."[i]

    Song Dong (b. 1966, Beijing, China) has emerged from a strong Chinese avant-garde performing arts community and developed into a significant contemporary art figure in the progression of Chinese conceptual art. Song graduated from the fine arts department of Capital Normal University in Beijing in 1989. He has been the subject of solo exhibitions at international museums including the Barbican Art Gallery, London (2012); Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing (2011); Vancouver Art Gallery (2010); The Museum of Modern Art, New York (2009); and the Zendai Museum of Modern Art, Shanghai (2008). He has been included in prestigious group exhibitions including Documenta 13, Kassel, Germany (2012); the Venice Biennale (2011); the Yokohama Triennale, Japan (2011); the Liverpool Biennial, U.K. (2010); the Gwangju Biennial, South Korea (2002); and Inside Out: New Chinese Art (1998) at the Asia Society and P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York.

    Song lives and works in his native Beijing with his wife and frequent collaborator, the artist Yin Xiuzhen.

    For more information about Song Dong, please contact Pace’s public relations department at 212.421.8987.

    For general inquiries, please email newyork@pacegallery.com; for reproduction requests, email reprorequest@pacegallery.com.

    Image: Song Dong, Facing the Wall, 1999. Photograph and wallpaper, 31-1/2" x 47-1/4". © Song Dong.

    [i] Song Dong (exhibition catalogue). Shanghai: Zendai Museum of Modern Art, 2008.