"Oh, My Homeland" Marrakech Biennale - Shanghai Himalayas Museum Pavilion
City: Marrakech
Curator: Wong Shun-Kit, Dr. Jasmin Gong
Duration: 2014-02-28 ~ 2014-03-31
Opening: February 28, 2014 11:00-13:00
Venue: Marrakech Museum
Address: Place Ben Youssef, Marrakech-Médina, Morocco
Participating Artist(s): Yuan Shun, Wang Nanming, Ni Weihua,Wang Jiuliang
Host(s): Himalayas Museum Pavilion

Deputy curator: Sun Peng

Project coordinator: Li Lu’e

Yuan Shun’s installations and photography show a fantasy land which he named “Mindscape”. He uses sand, wood, models, smoke to create a misty time and space, featuring the imagery of

traditional Chinese landscape; then he freezes the installation into his photography to destroy them right after. You can’t tell whether these science-fiction-like pictures illustrate the ruin of the earth or the first step of human beings on the moon, the mars or another planet. Will Mindscape be our future, after Ni Weihua’s cityscape, Wan Nanming’s naturescape, Wang Jiulang’s garbagescape? Will the “Mindscape” be our new homeland?

As a continuance of “Mind Land”, a project the artist initiated in Chile thirteen years ago, Yuan Shun is going to invite local children to collaborate with him during the completion of his performance/installation. These children, who have never been to China, are invited to use clay to create the landscape of China in their mind.

A combination of an avant-garde vision and elements of traditional ink art leads to a conceptual breakthrough in Wang Nanming’s techniques. His work translates theoretical criticism into artistic practice. At a time when “smog” was not yet a hit word in China, Wang already expressed his concerns through his installations and performances. But back then such efforts only caught attention from a few. It was not until 2013 that his works were publicly displayed. The seemingly abstract brushwork of “Rubbing – Drought” stood for the arid riverbed of the Yellow River, the “mother river” of China.

Ni Weihua has kept a visual record of the dramatic process of urbanization in China since the 1990s. Urbanization in China is carried out in a top-down manner. While slogans change constantly, living conditions for many remain unchanged. Most of those who lose their livelihoods in the countryside flock into cities. However, their new occupations - construction workers, nannies, blue collars - do not guarantee them the integration into urban life, let alone an identity. The city is close to them but, at the same time, it is very far away. This somewhat absurd alienation is a bitter reality of today’s urban China.

Wang Jiuliang started as a poor young artist. It came quite natural to him that garbage could make a good protagonist. Garbage in his photographs takes on a new faces: lofty mountains, dancing rivers and herds of cattle grazing under a glorious sunset. It takes the viewer a closer look to realize that what constitutes the beautiful “landscape” is actually garbage. This absurdity is meant to arouse viewers’ awareness of the underlying problems of environmental deterioration.

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[Editor] 孙雯