20
20
Zhu Wei
CHINA CHINA (A PAIR)
Estimate
80,000100,000
LOT SOLD. 162,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT
20
Zhu Wei
CHINA CHINA (A PAIR)
Estimate
80,000100,000
LOT SOLD. 162,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Contemporary Asian Art

|
New York

Zhu Wei
B. 1966
CHINA CHINA (A PAIR)
signed in Chinese on each body's left foot and numbered 2/12
bronze
each body: 74 3/4 by 34 1/4 by 22 3/8 in. 190 by 87 by 57 cm.
each base: 19 5/8 by 23 5/8 by 3/8 in. 50 by 60 by 1 cm.
Executed in 2002.
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This work is number 2 from an edition of 12. 

Exhibited

Other examples exhibited:
Beijing, Red Gate Gallery, Zhu Wei Works Exhibition, April, 2006
New York, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Corporate Corporeality: Chinese Artists Re-examing the Body in the Age of Global Capitalism, April, 2004
Hong Kong, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Zhu Wei - Another Perspective, May, 2004
Paris, Espace Cardin, Paris-Pékin Chinese Contemporary Exhibition, October, 2002

Literature

Zhu Wei, Beijing, 2005, p. 111, illustrated in color
Asian Art News, "A Week of Surprise," vol. 16, number 1, January/February, 2004, p. 66, illustrated in color
Insider's Guide to Beijing, Shantou, "The Road Home - Interview with Artist Zhu Wu,"  April 2004, p. 176, illustrated in color

Catalogue Note



Zhu Wei was born in 1966 and at the age of 16 joined the People’s Liberation Army, where he would remain for a decade and receive a degree from the PLA’s Art Academy.  Zhu subsequently established a studio in Beijing where he has produced a diverse body of work ranging from prints and paintings in a painstaking traditional process to three-dimensional works, among which the China China series is his most celebrated.

The China China series is inspired by Han dynasty terracotta figurines, and in both the hand-painted fibreglass edition of 2000 and the bronze editions of 2002, the artist simulates the dusty, excavated surfaces of the original objects.  Positioned one after the other, as though in military formation, Zhu’s contemporary figures are clad in the “Mao Suit,” and their facial features effaced.  In one edition of the sculpture, their forward-leaning stance offers a bow to authority that is both courteous and obeisant.  In the work on offer, the characters seem to have resumed their upright posture, although they remain faceless and expressionless, silent but imposing symbols of the faceless masses.

Zhu’s caricatured figures seem excavated from an archaeological site in the hinterlands of the Chinese psyche, where memories of the Qin Dynasty’s grandeur and the Cultural Revolution’s collectivism are equally present, suggesting a fundamental ambivalence about the character of the nation.  As such they express the questioning stance regarding the past and the future that is so prevalent among artists of Zhu’s generation.

Contemporary Asian Art

|
New York