Huan Zhong – Nature Follows Abstraction
The title is derived from the 4th Century B.C. philosopher Chuang Tzu’s concept of ‘Huan Zhong’ in his essay On Leveling All things. ‘Huan Zhong’ refers to the space within a circle. The circle represents the realistic world, while the space refers to the abstract and intangible. Chuang Tzu believed that the “essential” can only be attained when one investigates ‘Huan Zhong.’ If one understands ‘Huan Zhong,’ one better understands nature.
The exhibition invited both intergenerational and international artists to experiment within the small ‘abstract’ space surrounded by the ‘reality’ of the World Financial Centre to ask traditional 20th Century questions about abstract art such as “Transcendental or Experiential?” and “Abstraction or Nature?” which are still relevant in today’s de-centralized art environment. Does the homogeneity, universality and rationality associated with abstraction still hold, or has a more ‘social’ or ‘economic’ abstraction taken its place, reflecting the present world rather than remaining an extension of the individual?
This exhibition presents the work of teamlab (an interdisciplinary group seeking to collaboratively navigate the confluence of art, technology, design and the natural world) completed this year including the Fleeting Flowers series, which is making its public debut. This series uses digital technology to create a dynamic painting depicting vivid images of animals in countless flowers that constantly bloom and wither, simultaneously expanding the expressive forms of color and making a metaphor for the connected, cyclical nature of life. Reinterpretation of nature has always been a core theme of teamlab’s work. Their dazzling technical spectacles often conceal questions about human existence, and their artworks strive to provide urbanites a new sense of vitality for life in the natural world and new realizations about their own connection to the world around them. May 20 – October 10, 2017 Pace Gallery, Beijing
Installation view of the exhibition.
Part of the teamlab’s Fleeting Flowers series.