Zhan Wang - 20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale in Association with Poly Auction Hong Kong Thursday, December 3, 2020 | Phillips

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  • With contemporary spirit breaking through the constraints of traditional expression, Zhan Wang envisions a new path for contemporary Chinese sculpture by pounding, heating, and bending stainless steel over a real ‘Scholar’s Rock’. A contemporary sculpture is created with the full sensibility of the Chinese literati tradition and yet at the same time remains highly conceptual. 


    Zhaoji, Imitating Auspicious Dragon Stone, Song dynasty, Collection of The Palace Museum, Beijing

    Artificial Rock No. 54 was created in 2003. The shape of the stone fully demonstrates the standard of appreciation of Taihu stone according to Northern Song Dynasty painter Mi Fu - ‘thin, wrinkled, thorough, and transparent’. The upper half of the sculpture is graceful, lean and straight. With a stretched and balanced form, the stainless steel mirror surface reflects and distorts its surroundings. The semantic expressions of the sculpture become increasingly complex through the collisions and interlacings with different layers of materials. The Artificial Rock series not only explores traditional Chinese connoisseurship culture, but attempts to bring a more realistic meaning into the artwork by dispelling its conventional literati connotations. Taking advantage of the characteristics of the material, these ‘fake’ mountain stones shimmer on the outside but are hollow on the inside. This combination of uniqueness and repetition, fiction and essence, Eastern imagery and Western media, makes the work open to infinite interpretation below its glimmering surface.


    Scholar Rock Exquisite Jade Rock in Yu Garden, Shanghai
    • Provenance

      Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner

    • Literature

      Zhang Qunsheng, ed., Chinese Artists of Today: Zhan Wang, Lanzhou, 2008, pp. 191, 389 (another example illustrated)
      Huang Du, ed., Zhan Wang: The New Suyuan Stone Catalogue, Beijing, 2008, p. 84 (another example illustrated)


Artificial Rock No. 54

incised with the artist's signature, partial title, number and date "54# Zhan Wang [in Chinese] 2003 2/4" on the reverse
stainless steel
224 x 84 x 57 cm. (88 1/4 x 33 1/8 x 22 1/2 in.)
Executed in 2003, this work is number 2 from an edition of 4.

Full Cataloguing

HK$800,000 - 1,200,000 

Contact Specialist

Danielle So
Associate Specialist, Head of Day Sale

20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale in Association with Poly Auction

Hong Kong Auction 4 December 2020