Feng Bingyi, The Philosopher Who Jumps into the Volcano (2019) (detail). Three-channel video installation. Loop. Courtesy A Thousand Plateaus Art Space.
As one of the most anticipated young video artists in contemporary art of China, Feng Bingyi has been renowned for her sophisticated and glamorous artistic language and her unique forms of videos and installations.This solo exhibition presented by A Thousand Plateaus Art Space can be seen as a 'musical' reconnection of visions, philosophical thoughts and poems, the structure of which is similar to Symphonic Poem. And every individual work is in a different media, such as digital paintings, video installations and so on, presenting different categories of scenes.
Feng Bingyi takes the name of George G. Byron's poem She Walks in Beauty as the title of her exhibition. While the poem is about a woman in black, Feng's exhibition starts from the inner connection between the Universe and human beings, and returns to the shared nature of people in different backgrounds, before reminding the audience of their inner connections with each other. Facing the nihilism of individuals and hostilities between different social groups, especially in the year of 2020, Feng Bingyi tries to let people look up the same starry sky again with pure curiosity and awe.
This exhibition comprises five movements. The Introduction part presents digital drawings of celestial bodies according to computer simulations of unknown parts of the Universe, where the "present" on the Earth will never be shared, and the 'reality'can only be calculated instead of being experienced. Secondly, the Exposition part turns the edge of the world as a theatrical stage, where classic elements from the films of Georges Méliès find their new settings. And the Development part presents the world (or worlds) in the eyes of Empedocles–the philosopher who jumps into the volcano.
The Recapitulation part presents another fictive stage located in Times Square, along with a tangible stage in the exhibition hall where audience can stand on and find out "everyone is on the stage of another people and a miracle" (Feng Bingyi). And in last part Coda the audience can find a room called "The Room of a god".
With the melody of different works, Feng Bingyi connects daily experiences with infinite imaginations, representing the most innocent loneliness and desires for love and hope when a human being is facing the edge of the world, as Feng said: "The desire of seeing something and the desire of self-destruction are probably the same thing: people need a more reliable connection with the world.
About the exhibition
Dates: 19 September - 31 October
Venue: A Thousand Plateaus Art Space
Courtesy of the artist and A Thousand Plateaus Art Space.