Wang Xingwei

Wang Xingwei
b. 1969, Shenyang, Liaoning
Oil painter
Wang Xingwei graduated from the Fine Art Department of Shenyang Normal University (1990). His work is most often associated with its high degree of theatricality and kitsch performativity. Posing as one of the protagonists of his paintings, Wang shamelessly adopts all kind of visual references from both Chinese and Western visual and art historical practices, tossing them together in hyper-realistic pastiches of excess. One of his confessed intentions is to restrict the agency of the artist as much as possible: by using well-known artistic references, Wang wishes to establish a kind of independence for the work of art. Of his own artistic practices he has said:
I am very interested in outmoded conventions. I believe that these are the areas in which people are most lacking in vigilance…I try to make a surprise attack on this habit, or else to quietly change a certain element contained within, the better to make people feel a certain subtle unease.
Wang Xingwei lives and works in Haicheng.
Exhibitions of his work include: ‘China—Aktuelles aus 15 Ateliers’ in Munich (1996); The Dust of the Romantic History of Male Heroism’ at the Cifa Gallery in Beijing (solo exhibition, 1997); ‘Biennial of Contemporary Art of Lyon’ (1998); and the 48th Venice Biennale (1999).
Dal Lago, Francesca (1999). ‘Personal Mao: Reshaping an Icon in Contemporary Chinese Art’. Art Journal 58.2 (Summer): 46–59.
Dematté, Monica (1999). ‘Wang Xingwei’. In La Bimnale di Venezia, 48a Esposizione d’Arte, d’Apertutto, Aperto Over All. Marsilio: La Biennale di Venezia.
Knight, Juliet, Murray, Graeme, and Syme, Meg (eds) (1996). Reckoning with the Past. Contemporary Chinese Painting (exhibition catalogue). Edinburgh: The Fruitmarket Gallery.

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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