7th Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale


Curators and theme of the 7th Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale is announced

The 7th Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale will take place from May 12 to August 31, 2012 at OCT Contemporary Art Terminal (OCAT) in Shenzhen, China. The Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale (formerly known as Shenzhen International Contemporary Sculpture Exhibition) has been supported by Shenzhen Overseas Chinese Town Corporation Ltd. since its first edition in 1998. Previously, the main organizer of the Biennale was He Xiangning Art Museum. This year, the exhibition will be organized by OCT Contemporary Art Terminal and is officially named Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale.

OCAT is pleased announce the appointment of Liu Ding, Carol Yinghua Lu, and Su Wei as the curators of the Biennale. The curators have chosen “Accidental Message: Art is Not A System, Not A World” as the exhibition title, in an attempt to acknowledge the incidental, the unclassifiable, the organic, the inexplicable and the individual nature of art making, and that of the imaginary of our world, and to reiterate the possibility of the individual and independent spirit to overcome the systematic forces and the existing structures.

“Accidental Message: Art Is Not A System, Not A World” is conceived to include two subthemes: “Unexpected Encounters” and “What You See is What I See”. As the starting point for their research, “Unexpected Encounters” is focused on experimental art practice in China since 1989 to 2000. It is an observation of a local history, trying to look back on individual practices and art itself during this period of time. “What You See is What I See” presents current practices from all over the world in recent years. This component of the exhibition attempts to envision a kind of connectivity that consists of individual spirits, manifested through individual artists’ creations, transcending regions, systems, mechanisms, norms and art historical narratives. “What You See is What I See” proposes not the magnification of the effectiveness of any existing system, universal order or experience of others but an emphasis on the serendipitous, organic, stochastic, internal, perceptive and instinctual growth and reproduction of art within itself.

“Accidental Message: Art is not a System, not a World” uses a scattered perspectival method to engage in the observation of the self and the world we live in, incorporating the limitations of direct observation, experience and fields of vision. Nearly twenty years since the establishment of the Shenzhen Sculpture Biennial, the curators are committed to carrying on in its original intent: to focus on artistic experimentation and to boldly expand the exploration of sculpture into an exploration of various artistic forms including sculpture as well as creation itself.

About the Curators

Liu Ding was born in 1976 in Changzhou, Jiangsu Province. He is an artist and a curator based in Beijing. Curatorial work is integral to his artistic practice. His conceptual art project Liu Ding’s Store, begun in 2008, is a continuing project that discusses and presents the various visible and invisible mechanisms in the art system for the formation of value. Liu has shown his works in art institutions including the Turner Museum and the Arnolfini Gallery in the UK, the Kunsthalle Wien in Austria, the Astrup Fearnley Modern Art Museum in Norway, the Sao Paolo National Museum of Art in Brazil, the Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe, Germany, the RasquArt Center in Switzerland, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo in Italy, the Seoul Municipal Museum of Art in Korea, among others. He was chosen in 2009 as a representative of China at the 53rd Venice Biennale. Little Movements: Self-Practices in Contemporary Art, the project he and Carol Yinghua Lu initiated and curated together, was exhibited at the OCT Contemporary Art Terminal in Shenzhen in September 2011, and will go on an international tour from 2012.

Carol Yinghua Lu was born in Chaozhou, Guangdong Province in 1977. She is a critic and curator based in Beijing. She is currently a contributing editor at Frieze Magazine, and sits on the editorial board for the Arnolfini Art Center’s Far West magazine. She was a jury member for the 2011 Venice Biennale’s Golden Lion Award, and is one of the co-artistic directors for the 2012 Gwangju Biennial.

Su Wei was born in Beijing in 1982, and is a Beijing-based critic, curator and China Academy of Social Sciences Foreign Literature Institute doctoral candidate. He was the assistant curator of Little Movements: Self-Practices in Contemporary Art at the OCT Contemporary Art Terminal. The focus of his work is theoretical practice and writing on contemporary art.

About OCT Contemporary Art Terminal

Founded in 2005, OCT Contemporary Art Terminal (OCAT) is located in the creative cultural space of Overseas China Towns in Shenzhen. It is one of China’s leading contemporary art spaces known for its in-depth survey shows on individual artists, research-driven curatorial practice, annual summer theatre and dance workshops, screening and lecture series, as well as its international artist and curator residency programme.


Curated by Liu Ding, Carol Yinghua Lu, and Su Wei, the 7th Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale is a research-based exhibition consisting of various components: Unexpected Encounters, an examination of individual practices in China from 1989 to 2000; What You See is What I See, a grouping of recent works made by Chinese artists and artists from all over the world; and Public Projects, four special commissions for public venues. In the exhibition, artworks made from 1989 to 2000 in China in Unexpected Encounters and recent works by Chinese and international artists in What You See is What I See will intermingle with each other in the exhibition, rather than being presented in two sections. The exhibition opens on 12 May 2012.

Participating artists and documentations

Chinese Contemporary Artists’ Agenda (1994, a publication of artists’ proposals edited by Wang Luyan, Wang Youshen, Chen Shaoping, and Wang Jianwei) and 45 Degree as a Reason and Agreed to the Date 26 November 1994 as a Reason (1995, 1994, two postcard-based exhibitions curated by Geng Jianyi), Black Cover Book, White Cover Book, Grey Cover Book (1994-1997, a publication initiated and edited by Ai Weiwei, Xu Bing, and Zeng Xiaojun), Chen Shaoxiong (b. 1962, Shantou/China), Chen Zhou (b. 1987, Zhejiang/China), Josef Dabernig (b. 1956, Austria), Ding Yi (b. 1962, Shanghai/China), Fang Lu (b. 1981, Guangzhou/China), Laura Oldfield Ford (b. 1973, Halifax/UK), Simon Fujiwara (b. 1982, London/UK), Gu Dexin (b. 1962, Beijing/China), Guan Xiao (b. 1983, Chongqing/China), Hao Jingban (b. 1985, Shanxi/China), Hu Yun (b. 1986, Shanghai/China), Huang Ran (b. 1982, Xichang/China), Huang Yongping (b. 1954, Xiamen/China), Lee Mingwei (b. 1964, Taiwan/China), Li Yongbin (b. 1963, Beijing/China), Li Fuchun (b. 1983, Jilin/China), Li Ran (b. 1986, Hubei/China), Li Yu (b. 1973, Wuhan/China) + Liu Bo (b. 1977, Shishou/China), Lin Yilin (b. 1964, Guangzhou/China), Liu Shiyuan (b. 1985, Beijing/China), Lu Zhengyuan (b. 1982, Liaoning/China), Darius Mikšys (b. 1969, Kaunas/Lithuania), Haroon Mirza (b. 1977, London/UK), Nástio Mosquito (b. 1981, Angola), Qian Weikang (b. 1963, Shanghai/China), Kelly Schacht (b. 1983, Belgium), Shi Chong (b. 1963, Huangshi/China), Song Dong (b. 1966, Beijing/China), Sui Jianguo (b. 1956, Qingdao/China), Tsang Kinwah (b. 1976, Shantou/China), Katleen Vermeir (b. 1973, Belgium) & Ronny Heiremans (b. 1962, Belgium), Danh Vo (b. 1975, Vietnam), Wang Gongxin (b. 1960, Beijing/China), Wang Guangyi (b. 1957, Harbin/China), Wang Jianwei (b. 1958, Sichuan/China), Wang Luyan (b. 1956, Beijing/China), Wang Xingwei (b. 1969, Shenyang/China), Wang Youshen (b. 1964, Beijing/China), Wild (1997, a publication of site-specific projects curated by Song Dong, Guo Shirui, and Pang Lei), Wu Wenguang (b. 1956, Kunming/China), Xu Bing (b. 1955, Chongqing/China), Yan Xing (b. 1986, Chongqing/China), Yu Honglei (b. 1984, Inner Mongolia/China), Zhang Enli (b. 1965, Jilin/China), Zhang Peili (b. 1957, Hangzhou/China), Zhang Xiaogang (b. 1958, Kunming/China), Zhou Tiehai (b. 1966, Shanghai/China), Zhu Jia (b. 1963, Beijing/China).

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