21 March - 20 April 2019
Galerie Ora-Ora is delighted to present Beijing-based artist Zhang Yanzi’s solo exhibition Seclusion with opening reception to be held from 6 pm to 8 pm on March 25 (Monday) with the artist’s presence and the exhibition will last until April 20. Seclusion will be another serious concept to be presented in Hong Kong after her last exhibition at Hong Kong Medical Museum in 2016. In recent years, Professor Zhang is developing various concepts in the realm of art therapy and actively participated in the education as a professor of experimental art at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing teaching and researching in Art Therapy. From a creative perspective, Zhang continues to extend on her creative logic; to analyze the social and cultural situations using her own life experiences and illustrations through Chinese Ink. In particular, her recent creations “ seclusions“ interestingly creates a fresh perspective of beauty against such cruel topic.
The seclusion that Zhang highlights is what can be easily found in our daily lives within the society, and popular culture; It is a form of solidarity and hermitage. In our modern-day world, through improvements in technology and philosophy, people’s connectivity has become more effective and our value system more diversified. However, people’s presence and interaction within the society has falling behind towards solidarity and self-gratification within. Phenomena such as Otaku from Japan, addiction to virtual reality, and social ineptness, have all become strange but true depictions of our society.
Zhang’s recent creations bring focus to some common objects from daily life that surrounds the themes of anti-burglary and self-preservation - steel fences, barb wires and bamboo privets. As an artistic symbol, barb wires represent the cruel reality in society, and sharp thorns symbolize the cold cutting cruelty; when we walk through these thorns, we would inevitably be pierced and scathed to the flesh. The popular steel fences that can be seen everywhere amalgamate into reels and reels of stifling barricades, barring us to the inside. At the onset, people will naturally find these oppressive and sharp fences distasteful and repulsive. However, through time how did we ultimately got accustomed to their “protection“? Have we in fact been tranquilized by these fences that have been deceptively beautified? Has one ever created his own mesmerizing matrix of fences and became one’s own prisoner within? These questions are not only Zhang’s exploration of our society, but also questions of introspection. Just as the steel fences camouflaged with rainbow wrappers and colorful pills, Zhang created the “bamboo privets” alongside the “steel fences” to complete the “seclusion” series. Zhang wishes to prod the viewer not only to experience Zhang’s self-healing but also on a journey of self-speculation and self-reflection.
“Seclusion is a form of escape, it is also a choice; when one closes the door behind oneself, logic and potential can be fully released and realized to explore and experience the intangible.” said Zhang Yanzi.
In addition to the exhibition, Galerie Ora-Ora shall be hosting an artist talk with Zhang Yanzi from 10am to 11am 30 March 2019(Sat). Honorary guest speakers include: Dr. William Fan, Chairman of the Hong Kong Autism Awareness Alliance, Prof. Isaac Leung, Assistant Professor at Chinese University of Hong Kong, and Ms. Yan Tung, curator at the Hong Kong Museum of Medical Science as the moderator of the talk. The seminar will be livestreamed on Galerie Ora-Ora’s facebook page.
Dr. Henrietta Tsui-Leung, Founder and Owner of Galerie Ora-Ora commented: “We are delighted and proud to be participating in Art Basel Hong Kong for the seventh consecutive year. This year, our artists use compositional symbolism to express their "abstract intelligence" and hope to bring surprises to our Chinese and overseas collectors. At the gallery, Zhang Yanzi's will take up our H Queen’s space and explores the pain and treatment of the body, the spirit and the mind and how one develops means like Seclusion to self-help. Zhang’s artistic creation is articulate yet sensitive, symbolic and elegant, and is a perfect bridge between Eastern and Western philosophies.”