The Youth Curator Program, founded in 2014, is the annual academic project of the Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art, which aims to explore the significance of the exhibition today and the new possibilities for curating. The 5th “Qing Ce Plan” in 2018 received a total of 61 effective programs during the recruitment period. In July of this year, PSA Academic Committee members Homi Bhabha, Chris Dercon, Donna De Salvo, Ding Yi, Fei Dawei, Feng Yuan, Gao Shiming, Gong Yan, Hou Yuru, Mark Wigley, guest judge Reen Lorenceau, and invited judges Franck Gautherot’s international jury interview The 8 groups of the finalists were “toxic” (curtaining team: Lu Ningwei, Li Jingqiu, Ren Xinyi) and “The trees in the forest fell down without anyone” (curtaining team: Chen Zikai, Zhang Yiyin) stood out from the crowd. After two months of deepening and landing, the two selected projects will officially present the results of the exhibition to the public on November 2, 2018.
In the era of artificial intelligence and big data, the exhibition “toxic” looks at the possibility of “human-machine symbiosis” from a bold, novel and speculative perspective, and rediscovers the subtle relationship between art and real life. Mark Wigley commented: “The curatorial team tries to unravel by interpreting the social-cultural-individual-institutional structure into a code system and interpreting the computation-data-machine structure into a social biological system. The binary opposition between man and machine leads to the concept of ‘symbiosis’, in which the boundaries of various elements are intertwined and intertwined.” The exhibition “The trees in the forest fall down and no one is there” is in a new world. Re-examine the relationship between the perceived world and the real world, reconstruct the perception and experience through the artist’s perspective, and expand the individualized senses and experience to a deeper aesthetic category and social responsibility. Homi Baba commented: “This project connects key issues such as cultural perception, artistic interpretation and institutional development. How we measure the aesthetic and moral values generated by artists when they connect with the outside world is an ongoing process. A behavior requires the artist’s creativity and the new things in this interaction. This is crucial for aesthetics and for the construction of the world’s ecological and cultural evolution.”
In the course of continuous self-renewal and expansion, the “Qing Ce Plan” has assisted more than 30 Chinese curatorial forces in 14 years to achieve 14 exhibition projects, and has carried out roving activities and selected by many universities and cultural institutions around the world. Curators have overseas training opportunities. During the same period of the “Qing Ce Plan 2018” exhibition, PSA will hold a special exhibition and event for the 5th anniversary of the “Qing Ce Plan”. Through literature, documentary and publications, we will trace back and sort out the “Qing Ce Plan” and grow together with young curators. The course, while proposing new ideas for future exhibition planning and artistic language.
Chen Zikai studied curation and East Asian studies in London and Toronto respectively. He has worked for many international galleries such as Han Yaxuan and has curated and produced many exhibitions around the world, including “The World of Chen Fushan” at the Shanghai Art Museum. As an independent curator and writer, his research focuses on artist practice and contemporary urban issues, and was selected as a new curator of Para Site in Hong Kong and curated the exhibition “Spiritual Spirit”. Zhang Yuyin is an art administrator, exhibition planner and producer. He has worked in the Taipei Contemporary Art Museum, Hong Kong a.m.space and other art institutions and galleries, and participated in independent project planning. He is currently the Senior Planning Director of the Hong Kong Arts Centre, responsible for visual arts exhibitions and programmes, as well as planning and execution of cross-disciplinary projects.
The title “The tree in the forest falls down and no one is there” stems from a philosophical puzzle since ancient times: Does the world outside our own scope exist? The Western philosophers separate the world’s ontology from our senses. The world we live in is not the material ontology, but the sum we perceive. Quantum physicists use “Schrodinger’s cat” to interpret the connection and entanglement between the real world and human perception, and propose that everything is the result of many possibilities of contraction. Just as the cat in the box cannot know whether it is born or dead before being peeped, only one of them can be seen after opening the box, and the possibility of collapse becomes a certain reality. We can’t know the world beyond perception, but the artist is the forest road we know the world, allowing us to break the superposition process of objects and see the certain world.
The artist reflects his own observations in their artistic practice, reaffirming his own worldview in the process, and the work becomes a bridge between personal cognition and reality, showing the artistic thought and expression system. Artwork is a bridge between the audience and the artist. In the exhibition, the artist either presents different aspects of the art, or questions the boundaries between reality and reality, or explores and criticizes the identity of individuals and artists.
Today’s network technology is prevalent. Whether it is the communication space formed by social media or the virtual space created by VR technology, people can watch or experience different works of art, but it is easy to lose and ignore the “presence”. The exhibition will emphasize the importance of “on-the-spot”, combine external landscape design with inner emotions and experience, build experience of actual perception and creative knowledge, and test and trace the origin of contemporary art audience.
Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art (Power Station of Art)
Founded on October 1, 2012, Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art is the first public contemporary art museum in mainland China and the main venue for the Shanghai Biennale.
It is located on the Huangpu River in the mother river of Shanghai, with a building area of 41,000 square meters, an exhibition area of 15,000 square meters, and a maximum cantilever of 27 meters. The 165-meter chimney is both a city landmark and an independent exhibition space in Shanghai.
The Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art was transformed from the former Nanshi Power Plant. During the 2010 Shanghai World Expo, it was once the “Urban Future Pavilion”. It has witnessed the urban changes in Shanghai from the industrial to the information age, and its rugged industrial architectural style has provided artists with rich imagination and creative possibilities.
As the “production workshop” of the new urban culture, it is the life of this museum that constantly renews itself and keeps itself in progress. The Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art is working hard to provide the public with an open platform for contemporary cultural and artistic display and learning; to eliminate barriers to art and life; to promote cooperation and knowledge production between different cultures and arts.