Da Vinci: The Virgin and Child with St Anne and St John the Baptist
150 × 120 cm
Hive Center for Contemporary Art is pleased to announce the launch of Du Jingze’s second solo exhibition, “Grey Area,” onDecember 22, 2023, at Hive Center for Contemporary Art’s Shanghai Space, focusing on his latest paintings. This is the third
solo exhibition in China for the post-1995 Irish-Chinese artist, following “Elsewhere” at Hive Beijing in 2015, and “Reflection in the Water” at Sifang Contemporary Art Museum in 2022. The exhibition is curated by Yang Jian, curator of Hive Center for Contemporary Art, and will be exhibited until January 27th, 2024.
To date, both the direction of art and the trend limited to painting itself seem to be like a revolution of de-territorialization, in which artists invoke all kinds of new or old knowledge, techniques, or concepts to try to break through the region itself, which
may ultimately lead art to the realm of the inexplicable. The artists’ work seems to be constantly expanding a huge “grey area”-those possibilities that may transcend the outside of language, concept, and logic.
In the face of the overwhelming impact of modern technology and materials, traditional painting logic and standards are deconstructed and rewritten. Artists like Du Jingze have shifted their focus towards constructing a coherent spatiotemporal framework for their paintings. Holistically, Du Jingze excels in using the generation of hidden cultural symbols to pay grand homage to the history of painting. Simultaneously, within the artist’s conscious space, distinct from the realm of art history, he constructs a self-revelatory iconography — a form of contemporary image reflection. Admittedly, Du Jingze stands as a quintessential study model in the realm of technical image painting. Images altered by technology, the digital breathing of backgrounds, and the painterly effects in the composition resonate like noise and static signaling a messianic presence. It is as if an alarm has been sounded against traditional painting logic, perhaps marking the traces of the “grey area” within Du Jingze’s paintings—a zone of ambiguity between technology and the order of symbols, between the real world and art history.The rupture and displacement faced by images and material reality in the new painting logic pose questions about whether painting can encompass new forms and possibilities. A conceptual wasteland awaits recovery and integration.
Being a Chinese immigrant in Ireland, Du Jingze, faced with multicultural materials and resources, is accustomed to navigating different identities and backgrounds objectively and rationally. This “in-between” attitude, always maintained, is also evident in the self-painted spatiotemporal framework he constructs. It is precisely for this reason that the interesting aspect of thisexhibition lies in simultaneously presenting works that embody two painting logics of Du Jingze. Utilizing the basic principles of painting, the exhibition seamlessly stitches together classical art history materials, considered the primordial essence of painting, and the traces of technological interference in the real world—a birth of a whimsically poetic painting with distinctive contemporary features.