Sabancı University Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Art Gallery will host an exhibition by Chinese photographer Prof. Zhang Hui. Curated by FASS Visual Arts and Visual Communication Design (VAVCD) Program Faculty Member Alex Wong, the exhibition will be open to art lovers between 4 and 28 April 2023.
Prof. Zhang Hui will also give a presentation and a speech about the exhibition between 9:40 and 11:00 on April 5 and 6, in Studio 1014 of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.
Deputy Dean and Professor of the College of Art and Design, Xi'an University of Technology, Zhang Hui says the following about his exhibition, which consists of different themes:
The Royal Mausoleums
"This Photography series demonstrates 18 royal mausoleums that were built during the Tang dynasty and scattered from west to east at the Guanzhong Plain of Shaanxi in China. These relics were once regarded as “Eighteen Mausoleums of Guanzhong” by historians. There remain over 400 magnificent statues after more than 1300 years of baptism. This series is intended to highlight the Tang dynasty’s aesthetic ideology, which combines grandeur and delicacy and integrates solemnity and romance.
However, these invaluable relics are being undermined by erosion of acid rain, disturbance of thieves, expropriation of farmland, and exploitation of mountains. The situation is severe and difficult to maintain for now. These statues are exposed to various vulnerabilities through the barren spiritual culture in modern society. Material civilization emphasized by urbanism is threatening the preservation of traditional culture.
I, therefore documented and wish, with the aid of the form of these statues, to reveal the essence and characteristics of Chinese traditional culture and to make some efforts to restore the charisma of the endangered civilization."
The Escape Log
"The scenes in the photographs are all details of my life that are closely related to me, and my works are mainly self-perceptions of my personal life experiences. In this photograph series, I prefer not to provide a singular direct image from reality, but more of a daily fragment extracted from the background of life, an image presentation of a contradictory synthesis between the real and the unreal.
I hope to reinforce the daily encounters in my life with a vision and attitude of escaping from reality, hoping to replace the archetype with some symbolic meaning. The so-called "journal/log" is to express a subjective attitude towards life in the form of an objective record. Perhaps subconsciously, I always want to "escape" from the present reality, but a friend of mine would remind me and say: 'There is no escape'."
Mirror Reflection at the Edge of City
"The modern city, which is attached to reality but is psychedelic and full of mistakes, is the space constructed for us to live. On the edge, the rampant waste, like a tombstone, left me at a loss, disgusted or obsessed, as an inseparable part of life.
The work tries to use a mirror to dispel some urban objects hidden behind it. The staggered mirror reflects the surrounding environment, expecting the complex structure of the urban entity to evolveinto a simple sense of self-identity at this moment. In the mirror, it is the contradictory intentions of the minds of pain and pleasure; in the real world, all the urban complexes are being gradually cancelled out in the inner world of you and me. In its strange reflection language, limited individuals, and infinite sky, it seems so small.
In the city, it is an endless journey; inside or outside the mirror, we are replacing each other's roles, indistinguishable from each other."
Prof. Zhang Hui's exhibition consisting of 35 works can be visited at the FASS Art Gallery between April 4 and 28.