A painting by Chen Tong.
Chinese artists Chen Tong and Tian Hui are exhibiting their works at the “Overall Situation” exhibition at OCT Plaza.
The artists’ progressive creative practices address specific socio-economic conditions in China and the West. Relationships between art, the government and economics are swept up into an intersection of painting, texts, video and installation. These relationships can be seen, read and imagined, thereby triggering a discussion on present situations, unrest and crises.
Set in 1963 in Guangzhou, “Oi Kwan Hotel” is the first chapter of a novel written by Chen. In the novel, themes like a Chinese export trade fair, Hong Kong and Macao citizens, counterespionage, secrecy and smuggling serve to blend details into a spy thriller.
Tian’s artwork “Psychological Counseling Proposal for the Capitalist Sweet Life” is inspired by the worldwide financial crisis that resulted from the subprime mortgage crisis in the United States in 2008. His sketched portraits of thinkers, politicians, philosophers, economists, revolutionary theorists and leaders of social movements accompanied by their quotes represent his reflections and investigation after nearly 30 years of living in the United States.
A painting by Tian Hui.
Chen conducts long-term observation of the vista provided by China, an economy in the process of opening up to the world, and participates in the symbiotic experience of creation through that very same economic window. On the flip side, Tian creates while living within the economic engine of the capitalist world, working from direct experience and research. These two artists express radically different experiences, forming a dialogue rich in subtlety and nuance.
Chen now teaches at the Guangzhou Fine Arts Academy and is interested in publishing modern literature and art books. He owns the Libreria Borges bookstore where he organizes contemporary art and culture events in Guangzhou. Tian, a graduate from Brooklyn College in New York, engages in oil painting and tempera paintings.
Dates: Until Aug. 10, closed Mondays
Hours: 10 a.m.-10 p.m.
Venue: Boxes Art Space, Building 11, Lan Ying Fang, O’Plaza, OCT Harbor, 8 Baishi Road, Nanshan District (南山区白石路8号欢乐海岸购物中心蓝楹坊11栋盒子空间)
Metro: Line 9 to Shenzhen Bay Park Station (深圳湾公园站), Exit E
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