For the 19th Biennale of Sydney: You Imagine What You Desire, Chinese artist Zhao Zhao will show three works from his 2013 ‘Constellation’ series at the Art Gallery of NSW.
The intricate glass and stainless steel works take their inspiration from a number of sources. In 2005, the artist was involved in a car accident that resulted in a cracked windscreen. Zhao had the car repaired but kept the glass, fascinated by the forms and shapes contained in the fractured surface. Additionally, impelled by his interest in historical events, Zhao came across images of bullet holes left by the army following the 1989 protests in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square; and in 2007, his easy acquisition of a gun from an online shopping website led the artist to consider China’s relationship to violence in a broader sense.
Exhibited at Artspace for the 19th Biennale of Sydney: You Imagine What You Desire, Taca Sui’s photographs are quiet; still. Vivaciousness is not something that the artist seeks. Simple, stately and undemonstrative, his black-and-white, greyscaled pictures of landscapes, rock walls, curtains, statues, rivers, reeds and more, keep their meaning enclosed in a system of restraint.
This aesthetic purity echoes the Book of Odes, simply known as the Odes, to which Taca Sui has dedicated his images. Employed as impetus and inspiration, his ‘Odes’ refer to these ancient poems of Chinese culture, understood to be the first recorded works of oral poets gathered from the regional and rural places of China by, it is believed, the philosopher and teacher Confucius.