From the Mundane World: Launch Exhibition of He Art Museum Symposium: Everything is Quiet as Before, but the World is not What You See

2021.01.09 -2021.01.10

From the Mundane World: Launch Exhibition of He Art Musuem is open to public since October 1 of 2020. The exhibition is chaired by He Jianfeng, the director of He Art Museum and curated by chief curator Feng Boyi, curators Hu Bin, Wang Xiaosong, Liu Gang and Shao Shu.

We will hold the symposium of the exhibition titled Everything is Quiet as Before, but the World is not What You See starting from January 9 to 10 of 2021.

1. Symposium Information

Title:  Everything is Quiet as Before, but the World is not What You See

Organizer:  He Art Museum

Planning:  Curatorial team
· Chief Curator Feng Boyi
· Curator  Hu Bin, Wang Xiaosong, Liu Gang, Shao Shu
· Assistant Curator Yang Qing, Gou Xianxu, Yuan Zhao, Lai Zhiqiang, Wang Qi

Date:  October 9 and 10, 2021

Venue:  He Art Museum


2. Conversation and Discussion

Session One

My Practice - Voice from the Participating Artists

Participating artists are invited to share their way of practice and the thoughts behind the works.

Time: 09:10 - 12:00, January 9, 2021


Session Two

Milieu in Change: Tradition, Folk and Interactions in 20th Century Chinese Paintings

Chinese art and culture have formed a unique model in the relationship between humans and nature, as well as humans and society. Since modern times, this kind of model has undergone new changes through the process of cultural inheritance. As the intellectual Liang Qichao stated, "The criticism of painting in today's context, it is a state of milieu in change." On one hand, the formality, language, and symbolic patterns in traditional Chinese culture, folk culture, and high art have undergone complex evolution and transformation under a certain "new age"; on the other hand, external factors have been increasingly involved in the modern transformation of Chinese art on the global level. Traditional and folk art seem to be more of the continuation of the local context, but in fact already has a high degree of cross-cultural nature, and the interactions between domestic and foreign politics and national consciousness thus built up the unique connotation of modernism in China.

Time: 14:30 - 16:00, January 9, 2021


Session Three

The Knowledge Source of Chinese Contemporary Art

Whether Chinese contemporary art can be considered as established is first of all related to its independence in its resource utilization, awareness and artistic transformation.  The artists develop in their learning and grow in their creation. Experience and opportunity will naturally play important roles. The choice of pure ideals and "impure" motives will in the end be reflected in the works to verify their integrity.  As observers, curators and critics are more sensitive to the relationship between the individual artist and China, the contemporary, and the world's resources and information. This session invites guests, who are active in the field of contemporary art with different concerns, to share their observations and introduce Chinese contemporary art from the frontline of production.

Time: 16:20 - 18:10, January 9, 2021


Session Four

Experience All Things

"All things" is the broad concept of all objects and beings, including the unpredictable enigma of nature and its inexhaustible energy. Experience is both the starting and end point for humans, gaining greater perception through a process of coming in contact with these various objects and beings. In the field of contemporary art, material mediums are of paramount importance. Our interaction with nature is constructed and reconstructed by exploring, utilizing the quality and energy of materials, as well as by accumulated creative experiences. Artistic experiments extend beyond mere experience, they record the direction of our understanding of natural materials, reveal the limitations of the visual experience, and deconstruct, while transforming the original form of materials. As artists "experience all things," this gradually shapes their perceptions, thoughts, and transformations of art in material and visual culture, and brings out a transcendental visual tension.

Time: 09:00 - 10:30, January 10, 2021


Session Five

Doctrine for "Sole" Material Development

Modern development directly impacts all fields of human life. Humanity’s infinite worship of energy on an epistemological level and the overexploitation of natural resources have led to resource depletion. This depletion lays the foundation, on which the doctrine of "sole" material development is built. It represents the rampant destruction of the Earth's natural ecology and lack of control as a result of social production, consumer culture, and personal desires. Hence, through an artist's anxious expressions of the ecological changes, they are alerting the world and protecting the environment. Perhaps this exhibition will give insight to the profound social problems that affect the world through the artists' expressive displays. Although this explanation and criticism involve social systems and realistic demands of them, the exhibit tries to arouse the audience's awareness of the crisis of human survival and the sense of reverence for nature.

Time: 10:30 - 12:00, January 10, 2021


Session Six

Mundane Canteen

In traditional Chinese history, Shunde is one of the most culinarily rich cities. Eating is a human instinct and is closely related to our body and survival. The food chain can also be one of the indicators for measuring the diversity of natural ecology. The change and integration of food culture has not only become a major source of national and religious taboos, but also reflects the conflicts in social history, events, power, and class. The participating artists transform this indispensable sustenance into a creative resource, build a metaphorical canteen in the exhibition space for communicating the deeper themes of cooking, and trace the food-related memories about life based on the traditional diet and cultural experience from different countries and ethnic groups. Food art re-interprets the basis of our existence and extends it to the realm of material culture. This art is formed through experiences of cooking, consuming, desire, and the diverse eating cultures of the artists and audiences, thereby presenting the symbiotic relationship between our living environment and our food systems.

Time: 14:30 - 16:00, January 10, 2021


Session Seven

The Situation and Practice of Private Art Museums

As a private art museum, relying solely on local resources is not enough to build its distinctiveness and future development. In today’s rich and complex art ecology, the pattern of art institutions, such as various types of art museums in metropolises, has spread to small and medium-sized cities. It is becoming difficult to distinguish oneself from others in the sense of cultural capital. Constant consideration is needed to focus on the relationship between oneself and the global network formed by other cities and the rest of the world. This is one issue that private museums have to face. How to introduce global art resources into the local to form a localized international art ecology? The practices of HEM in Shunde and other similar organizations may provide a possibility.

Time: 16:20 - 17:50, January 10, 2021


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