Yangjiang Group

Yangjiang Group


Yangjiang Group is an artistic group founded in 2002 by Zheng Guogu (b. 1970, Yangjiang, China), Chen Zaiyan (b.1971, Yangchun, China) and Sun Qinglin (b.1974, Yangjiang, China). Yangjiang Group takes its name from their hometown where the artists are based. They use the unique medium of Chinese calligraphy to develop a diverse contemporary practice.


Rather than rebelling against the tradition of Chinese calligraphy, Yangjiang Group gets its inspiration from the origin of the “long river” of Chinese calligraphy – the ancient days when painting and writing forms were not divided. For Yangjiang Group, the momentum of modern society is calligraphy coming to life and the process of creating calligraphy becomes a way for the artists to reflect the world. Combining calligraphy with the unknowable dynamics of life force, the art of Yangjiang Group forges a unique style – I make calligraphy therefore I am. Known for their playful attacks on traditional calligraphy and attempts to subvert socio-cultural conventions and values, their works explore many different formats such as painting, multimedia installation, and performance and use materials such as wax, food and foam. Audience participation is a significant component of their work, ordinary events such as eating, tea drinking are vital to their convivial working process and cultivation of community-based exhibition experiences. Elements from everyday life - news talks, gambling, soccer games, discount sales etc.- give birth to a new approach of making calligraphy. Time and materials are transformed into a comprehensive situation by the fermentation of interaction with wine, tea, discourses and daily situations.


Their recent solo exhibitions include: Yangjiang Group: Are You Going to Appreciate Calligraphy First or Measure You Blood Pressure? at N3 Contemporary Art, Beijing, 2018; Yangjiang Group: Calligraphy is the Way to Communicate with the Most Primal at MMCA, Seoul, 2016-2017; Yangjiang Group: Social Participation and Everyday Experiment with Calligraphy at MAXXI, Rome, 2015; Yangjiang Group: Action for Tomorrow at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney, 2015; The Writings of Today are a Promise for Tomorrow at Palazzo Morosina, Venice, 2015; Fuck off the Rules: Yangjiang Group at Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai, 2013; Yangjiang Group – After Dinner Shu Fa at Cricket Pavilion, Eastside Projects, Birmingham, 2012.They have participated in numerous international exhibitions and bienniales including: Tales of Our Time, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 2016; The 5th Auckland Triennial, Auckland, 2013; Lyon Biennial, Lyon, 2009; Documenta 12, Kassel, 2007, etc.




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