Atheist

For her exhibition at Galleri Image, Lijie Zhang created an installation in the form of a reconstruction of a typical state official’s office in China. Alongside the office artefacts the exhibition included a number of Zhang’s photographic works, a video installation, and old photographs from the artist’s family album.
Udstillingsperiode:
01-05-2015 - 28-06-2015
Medie:
Photography/installation
Titel:
Atheist
Kunstner:
Lijie Zhang
For her exhibition at Galleri Image, Lijie Zhang will create an installation in the form of a detailed reconstruction of a typical state official’s office in China. Alongside the office artefacts the exhibition will include a number of Zhang’s photographic works, a video installation with sound and old photographs from the artist’s personal family album. 

The title of the exhibition, Atheist, refers to a worldview that had a profound impact on Chinese society since Communism came to dominate as the official political discourse. Today most Chinese people don’t belong to any religious group and the traditional religions do not have a significant role in their lives. The resulting vacuum, intensified by extreme events such as the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution, has forced each Chinese generation to create new identities seemingly without looking to the past. 

The exhibition presents the artist’s subjective view of China. Zhang has lived not only in China but also in Europe, and so her view has been influenced by both Chinese and Western cultures. In an interaction between the subjective and the collective consciousness, the artist deals with themes concerning Chinese society, its history and ideology, and what it means to be young in modern-day China. 

The exhibited photographic works can also be found in Zhang's photobook Midnight Tweedle, 2015, where many of the themes that are touched on in the exhibition are also explored. The book is also included in the exhibition as a reading copy.

About the artist
Lijie Zhang was born in 1981, and lives and works in Beijing. She has a MA in Journalism from Beijing Normal University and a MA in photography from UAL, London College of Communication.
Zhang’s artistic style is best described as a snapshot aesthetic, while her roots are in the documentary photography tradition. From the beginning of her photographic career her concerns have been with society’s exiles: the handicapped, the diseased and so on. She has also worked on projects addressing the inequalities of the larger global society. Lijie Zhang is well known in China for her photographic series on SARS and for her collaboration with handicapped children which provided them with new ways of expressing themselves.
Her works have been exhibited many places including Beijing, Guangdong, Dali, Yunnan and Lianzhou in China, as well as in New York and Paris. She has received numerous awards and has been profiled in the New York Times – Lens, Newsweek and China Daily. 

On Saturday the 2nd of May at 2PM, Lijie Zhang gave an Artist Talk at Galleri Image where she discussed her artistic practice and the ideas behind it. Saturday the 27th of June Galleri Image hosted a seminar on contemporary Chinese art featuring artist and associate professor at CAFA Fei Jun, the Art reporter Pei Yan, and the Chinese photographer, performance and video artist Liu Jin.

The exhibition is supported by The Danish Arts Foundation and The Municipality of Aarhus.
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