Everywhere Solo Exhibition of Gezhen

Opening time:3:30pm, September 21, 2012
Duration: 2012.09.22 -- 2012.09.28
Location: 3rd floor exhibition hall of Building No.1, Today Art Museum

Exhibition Preface

The winged man is a bird and a man; he is any man, and he's himself; he is original man and modern man. The winged man is male and female. His identifying phrase is "nothing's impossible." However, there's something unchanging about him - constant contemplation/self-reflection. That's why he must be lonely, leave into reclusion, be full of wounds, and be friends with wasteland. What truth this holds in today's world! It's not even slightly fatuous, nor is it surreal. All of Ge Zhen's fatuousness is narrating a truth - freedom is only in your heart. Freedom only comes from the self. What I've really seen in Ge Zhen's bare trees, bird cages and winged men is the trial of the modern intellectual's soul - not the self-expression of ancient intellectuals, and certainly not a call to the outside (getting sympathy from others) through illuminating expressions of scenic elements - they are just the dejected man wandering off under the western setting sun.                                                         By Gao Minglu
      From the perspective of graphics design we discover that almost all of Ge Zhen's works have a virtual setting (including people, background and things), taking a further step in creation, narrative-style fabrication, incomplete plots (or one could say, story fragments), e.g., a large bird is locked in a cage, a young angel with broken wings stands in wasteland, bird and man dance together between the sky and earth, a bent-winged angel, or someone singing in reed-covered wetland, or daydreaming by a cage....This creation is yet again not a baseless fabrication, but always thickly intertwined with "original forms" in human memory. For example, the "original form" of the "bent-winged angel" has three beginnings: one is Protestantism or Catholicism, another is the feathered figures found in Han Dynasty stone reliefs, and finally there are the singing and dancing angels in Buddhist frescoes. Although fabrication isn't possessed or existing in reality - and as such all people, settings and things that Ge Zhen paints lack so-called archeologic value - they instead possess an undeniably poetic authenticity. I believe this is reality on a deeper level. Also it is this realistic quality which deeply moves us and forms the integral core of meaning in Ge Zhen's works.                                                         By Chen Xiaoxin
     Ge Zhen's works are themed on the helplessness and tragedy created by the tension between ideal and real, seeking balance between pain and joy and defeat and hope. To this generation the caged bird feels worried and confused - but unfazed...although there's ruined or extinguished feeling in these works, the eternal style persists in its direction and confidence. In this complex relationship, a not-so-firm but unresolved will to live emanates a peculiarly poetic beauty. When faced with a plethora of conflicts like freedom and captivity, dream and reality, existence and extinction and life and death, his works from a tragic tone base emanate a cool and clear mindset- which follows in the vein of traditional Chinese calligraphy and literary illustrators. Thus, even though the chosen media is oil, Ge Zhen's works have a philosophy: a style muddled at the perimeter and intuitive in understanding, the world can be known through perception and not through fearful respect, and from this comes easy-going and optimistic fatalism.                                                          By Du Xiyun


Chen Xiaoxin