Ai Jing's tangible expressions in new solo art show

By Chen Nan ( China Daily ) Updated: 2016-03-31 08:12:25

Ai Jing's tangible expressions in new solo art show

Ai Jing's installation Wave. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Marcia Levine, special projects director of Marlborough Gallery, first met Ai in New York in 2015. She flew to Italy to see Ai's exhibition, Dialogues, at the Ambrosian Art Gallery of the Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana Museum in Milan.

With the themes of industry, nature and technology, Ai created a "dialogue" through her works with selected masterpieces at the museum, which is known for its collection of 12 manuscripts by Leonardo da Vinci.

"I was amazed by the beauty and strength of her works. She showed us that art could connect East and West in a cultural way and we want to present her works to the people in the US," says Levine, who is in Beijing this week with Ai.

She also says that the gallery, which was founded in 1946 with two spaces in New York as well as locations, such as London, Madrid and Monaco, has been working closely with Chinese artists since the 1990s, including the late Chinese-French artist, Zao Wou-ki.

"Ai is very special as a contemporary Chinese artist because her works show a mixture of Eastern and Western influences," says Chen Lyusheng, deputy director of the National Museum of China, who curated Ai's exhibitions in Beijing, Shanghai and Milan.

Looking back on her journey as an artist, Ai says that she often asks herself two questions: What is art? Why I am making art?

"My art-making is about repeated experimentation and failure. Usually, I go through starvation, sleepless nights and anxiety to finish one piece. But I enjoy the process of making the imagined real with my hands," she says.

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