Zeng Hao - Contemporary Art Evening Sale London Wednesday, February 27, 2008 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Shanghai Art Gallery, Shanghai

  • Literature

    Handel, L., Weng, L., Wang, J. and Jiang, M., eds., Beyond Boundaries: Three on the Bund, Shanghai, 2003, p. 188 (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    The randomness and displacement of contemporary life are signature emblems of Zeng Hao’s work. Zeng Hao’s signature ‘floating worlds’ comprise the artist’s wry comment on the significance we invest in our material possessions and, ironically, the ensuing disconnection produced by such consumer-driven lifestyles. Zeng’s artistic inquiry has much in common with his contemporaries such as Zheng Guogu and Chen Shaoxiong, all of whom grew up during China’s economic boom and share a fascination with globalization’s highly sophisticated material culture and the slightly unreal texture of postmodern life. In the eyes of this generation of artists, personal identity is defined and sometimes obliterated by a constant, all-pervasive barrage of manufactured desire.
    March 29th, like many of Zeng’s visual narratives, depicts a lone character against the furniture of his life (a dispenser of purified water, a couch that matches the canvas, a well-ornamented bookcase). Zeng’s randomization of the objects on the canvas, combined with his deliberate lack of perspective, produce an architectural space that is at once disjointed, vacuous, and yet intriguing. While Zeng’s characters are clearly alienated beyond any perceptible sense of fulfillment, the artist’s palettes and spaces nonetheless remain superficially attractive –  perhaps only the more incisive to indict these citizens who measure out their lives with coffee spoons.
    Born in Kunming in 1963 and trained in the top-ranked Oil Painting Department of Beijing’s Central Academy of Fine Arts, Zeng now teaches oil painting in the Guangzhou Academy of Fine Art. “… In his works, there emerges a unique air of introspection and other psychological factors that aptly express the new spiritual reality of the era that follows the cynicism and nihilism of the early 1990s. The contradictory narrative structures and semiotic methods in his works are likewise incredibly well-suited to our moment, in which determinacy has been lost. For precisely these reasons, I have always considered Zeng Hao emblematic of the Chinese conceptual painting movement in the mid -1990s.” – Z. Huang, transl. by P. Tinari


March 29th

Oil on canvas.
200 x 240 cm. (78 3/4 x 94 1/2 in).

£25,000 - 35,000 

Sold for £43,700

Contemporary Art Evening Sale

28 Feb 2008, 7pm