Zeng Hao

Zeng Hao
b. 1963, Kunming, Yunnan
In 1993, four years after graduating from the Department of Oil Painting at the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Zeng Hao was hired by the Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts. In 1996, he moved back to Beijing as an independent artist. As a student, his style had followed very much the line of Cynical Realism (Popi) popular at the time. It was only after his three-year sojourn in Guangzhou, a city preoccupied with the search for wealth and comfort, that he found his own painting idiom. In 1994 he started concentrating on describing indoor life. His initial work placed people and objects in an arbitrary perspective, but remained, ironically, rather realistic. Soon, however, he moved his attention away from detail.
With a detached gaze, he begun creating a rarefied universe in which carefully silhouetted miniature human figures and interior objects are dispersed in a random order to resemble cosmic dust: weightless, meaningless but spellbinding. The various unrelated figures and objects are juxtaposed against beautiful monochromatic backgrounds. This literal objectification and depersonalization of people has since become Zeng Hao’s signature style. Zeng Hao had his first solo show at the Gallery of the Central Academy of Fine Arts (1999), and has participated in many exhibitions, including ‘Transience’ at the Smart Museum of Art in Chicago (1999), and the First Guangzhou Triennial (2002).
Li, Xianting (1997). ‘Pingmian’er shuli de richang jingguan: Zeng Hao zuoping jiqi xiangguan huati’ [Two Dimensionality and Alienation of the Everyday Experience: Regarding Zeng Hao’s Work and Related Topics]. In Zeng Hao (exhibition catalogue). Beijing: The Gallery of the Central Academy of Fine Arts.
Wu, Hung (1999). ‘Interior Time/Space’. In Wu Hung, Transience. Chinese Experimental Art at the End of the 20th Century. Chicago: David and Alfred Smart Museum of Art.

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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