conceptual art

Wang Jin

China 1962

Installation, Sculpture, Performance Art, Conceptual Art

Wang Jin
Wang Jin
Male
China
1962
March 8, 2015

Wang Jin is a Beijing-based sculptor, installation artist, and performance artist, whose powerful conceptual work reflects both his own personal experiences and the transformations of Chinese culture.

Wang Jin was born in 1962 in Datong city, a province of Shanxi. After graduating from the China Academy of Fine Arts in 1987 with a focus on traditional Chinese painting, he worked at the Beijing Institute of Clothing as drawing instructor for three years. Disappointed with the fact that his creative output was being hindered by this job as an instructor, Wang quit his job, and started to create experimental works as an independent artist.

Wang Jin is a versatile artist who eschews a signature style, whose poetic oeuvre reverberates with history as it encounters the contemporary world. His sense of social critique is charged with private emotion, leading to images that are evocative presences, rather than explicit messages. In 1993, Wang Jin began creating provocative performances outdoors, and documenting them in photographs that stand on their own as potent, mysterious images.

His 1995 photograph, To Marry a Mule, with Wang Jin and his mule-bride, in hat and stockings, is a sardonic, absurdist reflection of the artist’s bureaucratic nightmare of, after eight attempts, being
denied a visa to the U.S. to join his wife who had moved here, leading to their divorce.

History, modernity, and the coming of a market economy are confronted in a series of banknotes in various international currencies that the artist painted on original Qing Dynasty tiles, approximately 2′ square, from the Forbidden City. Wang Jin approached the issue of money’s pervasive effects in the 1995 performance Quick Stir-Frying Renminbi, in which he cooked a kilo of domestic coins at the Donganmen night market, Beijing.

Jin’s series titled Chinese Dreams are Peking opera robes made in PVC with fishing line embroidery. The artist chose this material for these robes because he feels plastic can perfectly represent contemporary society.

Over the past decade, Wang Jin created performances and showed his photographs and sculptures extensively in China. Since his inclusion in the 1999 Venice Biennale, Wang Jin’s work has been increasingly present in international exhibitions across Asia, the United States, and Europe.

Wang currently lives and works in Beijing.

YearExhibition TitleGallery/MuseumGroup/Solo
2010The European Fine Art Fair (TEFAF) Maastricht 2010Maastricht, NetherlandsGroup
2009Dress Codes: Clothing as MetaphorKatonah Museum of Art, Katonah, NY, USAGroup
2008Wang Jin: Dream of ChinaDesigner's Gallery, Köln, GermanySolo
2008Food and ShelterPekin Fine Arts, Beijing, ChinaGroup
2008Spring Training: Beijing 2008Pekin Fine Arts, Beijing, ChinaGroup
2008Art Beijing Contemporary Art FairBeijingGroup
2008Zhù Yi - China actual photographyInstitut de Cultura de Barcelona, Palau de la Virreina, Barcelona, SpainGroup
2007Wang JinFriedman Benda, New York City, USASolo
2007The First Today's Documents 2007- Energy: Spirit • Body • MaterialBeijing Today Art Museum, Beijing, ChinaGroup
2007The Quiet Gesture: Recent Chinese ArtNewark Art Museum, Newark, NJGroup
2007Arles FestivalArles, FranceGroup
2007Zhu Yi - Contemporary Chinese PhotographyARTIUM de Alava, SpainGroup
2007The Year of the Golden Pig: Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg CollectionLewis Glucksman Gallery, Cork, UKGroup
2006Between Past and Future: New Photography and Video from ChinaHaus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, GermanyGroup
2006Shu: Reinventing Books in Contemporary Chinese ArtGallery Coordinator China Institute in America, NJGroup
2005THE WALL - Reshaping Contemporary Chinese ArtMillennium Art Museum, Today Art Museum, Beijing, ChinaGroup
2005THE WALL - Reshaping Contemporary Chinese ArtAlbright-Knox Art Gallery, State University at Buffalo Art Galleries, Buffalo, NY, USAGroup
2005Mahjong - Chinesische Gegenwartskunst aus der Sammlung SiggKunstmuseum Bern, Bern, SwitzerlandGroup
2005Mahjong - Chinesische Gegenwartskunst aus der Sammlung SiggGlockengiesserwall, Hamburg, Germany.Group
2005Between Past and Future: New Photography and Video from ChinaSeattle Art Museum, SeattleGroup
2005Between Past and Future: New Photography and Video from ChinaMuseum of Contemporary Art, ChicagoGroup
2005Between Past and Future: New Photography and Video from ChinaSmart Museum of Art, Chicago, USGroup
2005Xianfeng - Chinese Avant-Garde Sculpture - People's Republic of China Passport No. 1295109Beelden aan Zee Museum, Hague, Netherlands.Group
2004Between Past and Future: New Photography and Video from China - A Chinese Dream, International Center of Photography, New YorkGroup
2004Exchange PoundBeijing, ChinaGroup
2004Le Printemps de ChineCRAC ALSAC, Altkirch, FranceGroup
2004Chinese Object: Dreams & ObsessionsSalvatore Ferragamo Gallery, New YorkGroup
2003Together with Migrants, 100%Today Art Gallery, Beijing, ChinaSolo
2003Do you Have Swiss Franc?Beijing, ChinaGroup
2002Measuring USABeijing, ChinaSolo
2002Transit - Money and Value - The Last Taboo - Knocking at the DoorGallery Rene Steiner, Erlach, SwitzerlandSolo
2002The Long March - A Walking Visual Display - On the Wall Hang the Swords, Which are Upside DownJing Gang Shan, ChinaSolo
2002Do You Change Your Money to Euro?Beijing, ChinaGroup
2002PARIS-BEIJING - To Marry a Mule, A Chinese Dream, Fighting the Flood-Red Flag CanalPlace Pierre Cardin, Paris, FranceGroup
2002Triennale of Chinese Art - The Landscape Here is Beyond CompareGuangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, ChinaGroup
2002Guangzhou Triennale - My ToothGuangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, ChinaGroup
2002Welcome ChinaGallery Soardi, Nice, FranceGroup
2001My ToothShandong, ChinaGroup
2001Take Part – Zeitgenössische Chinesische KunstGalerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, SwitzerlandGroup
2000EXPO 2000 Hannover - My BoneHannover, GermanyGroup
2000Our Chinese FriendsACC Galerie, Weimar, GermanyGroup
2000Our Chinese FriendsGalerie der Bauhaus-Universitat, Weimar, GermanyGroup
1999100% - performanceBeijing, ChinaSolo
1999Inside, Out: New Chinese ArtSFMoMA, San Francisco, USGroup
1999Inside, Out: New Chinese ArtMuseo de Arte Contemporaneo, Monterrey, MexicoGroup
1999Art 30 BaselGalerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, SwitzerlandGroup
1999A Man of Striking Appearance100%, BeijingGroup
1999Art CologneGalerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, SwitzerlandGroup
1999TRANSIENCE: Chinese Experimental Art at the End of the Twentieth Century - A Chinese DreamSmart Museum of Art, Chicago, US Group
1999TRANSIENCE: Chinese Experimental Art at the End of the Twentieth Century - A Chinese DreamUniversity of Chicago, USGroup
1999TRANSIENCE: Chinese Experimental Art at the End of the Twentieth Century - A Chinese DreamUniversity of Oregon Museum of Art, USGroup
1999TRANSIENCE: Chinese Experimental Art at the End of the Twentieth Century - A Chinese DreamThe Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, USGroup
1999Eight Chinese ArtistsGalerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, SwitzerlandGroup
1999Poly PhenolremmneBeijing, ChinaGroup
199948th International Exhibition of Contemporary Art, La Biennale di Venezia, Italy - To Marry a Mule, Fighting the Flood, Red Flag Canal, A Chinese DreamVenice, ItalyGroup
1998A Chinese DreamShen Lu, The site of the Ming Imperial Tombs, Beijing, ChinaSolo
1998A Chinese DreamBeihai Park, BeijingSolo
1998A Chinese DreamThe Forbidden City, BeijingSolo
1998Ink Art ReleasedNational Gallery of Art, Beijing, ChinaGroup
1998Forward to the Victory - MemorealismFukuoka Asian Art Museum, Fukuoka, JapanGroup
1998Inside Out: New Chinese ArtP.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, NYGroup
1998Inside Out: New Chinese ArtSan Francisco Museum of Modern ArtGroup
1998Inside Out: New Chinese ArtThe Asia Art Museum of San FranciscoGroup
1998Inside Out: New Chinese ArtMuseo de Arte Contemporaneo, Monterrey, MexicoGroup
1998Inside Out: New Chinese ArtTacoma Art Museum, WashingtonGroup
1998Inside Out: New Chinese ArtThe Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, USGroup
1998Eight Chinese ArtistsGalerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, SwitzerlandGroup
1997A Chinese DreamThe Long Corridor in the Imperial Summer Palace, BeijingSolo
19974 SecondsWatari Museum, Tokyo, JapanGroup
1997W2.Z2 - Multimedia Slide Art - Well-CoverCIFA Gallery of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, BeijingGroup
1997Dream of China: '97 Chinese Contemporary Art - China, the World of MortalsYanhuang Art Museum, BeijingGroup
1996Ice, 96 Central China (performance)Zhengzhou, Henan, ChinaSolo
1996Reality: Present and Future - Knocking at the DoorInternational Art Palace, Beijing, ChinaSolo
1996Chinese Art Festival (performance)Munich, GermanSolo
1995Quick Stir-Frying RMB (performance)Jianxin Hotel, Xicheng District, BeijingSolo
1995Fried Land (performance)the Dong’anmen Night MarketSolo
1995Fried Land, the Dong'AnMen Night Market (performance)Wangfujing Dajie, BeijingSolo
1995Knocking at the Door (21 cashbricks)(performance)The Wall of the Forbidden City, BeijingSolo
1995To Marry a Mule, (performance)Laiguangying Village, Chaoyang District, BeijingSolo
1994Red: Beijing-Kowloon (performance)Beijing-Kowloon Railroad, Daxing County, BeijingSolo
1994Fighting the Flood - Red Flag Canal (performance)Lin Xian, Henan, ChinaSolo
1994Investment Guide - The Last Bus (performance)Beijing Railway Station, ChinaSolo
1994Endorse a Declaration - Insect Spray (performance)The Wall of the Forbidden City, BeijingSolo
1992100 Straw PortraitsThe Beijing Youle Amusement, Beijing, ChinaGroup
1986Trend - Ink BodyThe Beijing International Art Center, ChinaGroup
1985Advanced Chinese Youth Art - Pure BrightnessThe National Gallery, Beijing, ChinaGroup