Guan Xiao


    Guan Xiao (b. 1983, Chongqing, China) currently lives and works in Beijing. Guan takes a playful approach to her sculpture, video, and installation artworks. She creates a visual language that breaks through historical and cultural boundaries by establishing diverse relationships between a variety of rich materials, using collage to fuse classical art language with industrial manufacturing civilization to build a unique form of contemporary art. She often juxtaposes physical objects – such as industrial products and cultural artifacts – alongside images amassed from scrolling through the infinite universe of desktop and laptop screens. Her works generate cohesive textures between binaries sourced from contrasting and even conflicting worlds, and fuse old and modern, digital and analogue, and natural and artificial modes. Attuned to both possibilities and looming hazards, Guan Xiao’s prescient and fascinating arrangements critique the technological thrust of the present moment while providing indelible visions of our dislocated, rapidly approaching future.

    Guan Xiao has been the subject of solo and group exhibitions at important institutions worldwide including: Fictional Syntheses, Kraupa-Tuskany Zeidler, Berlin (2024); Objective Objects, Gallery daSein, Shenzhen(2024); Antenna-Tenna: Project Space, Antenna Space, Shanghai(2024); Screening Project I: Spring Chamber, Start Museum, Shanghai(2024); From Leaves to Shields, David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles(Solo, 2023); After Laughter Comes Tears, Mudam Luxembourg, Luxembourg(2023); Horizons: Is there anybody out there?, Antenna Space, Shanghai(2023); Art in Suhe Haus: Exhibition II – Dust Piles Us Up, Shanghai(2023); On The Val­ue Of Time: New Pre­sen­ta­tion Of The Col­lec­tion Of Con­tem­po­rary Art, Museum Ludwig, Cologne(2023); Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen, Denmark (2022); Leeum Museum of Art, Seoul, South Korea (2022); The 34th Bienal de São Paulo: Though It’s Dark, Still I Sing, São Paulo, Brazil (2021); X Museum Triennial 1st Edition: How Do We Begin?, X Museum, Beijing, China (2020); Bonner Kunstverein, Bonn, Germany (Solo, 2019); Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, Missouri, US (Solo, 2019); Kunsthalle Winterthur, Winterthur, Switzerland (Solo, 2018); The 57th Venice Biennal: Viva Arte Viva, Venice, Italy (2017); Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume, Paris, France (Solo, 2016); Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), London, UK (Solo, 2016); The 13th Lyon Biennal: La vie moderne, Lyon, France (2015); New Museum Triennial: Surround Audience, New Museum, New York, US (2015) and among others.

    Her work is in the permanent collections of institutions, such as the Grand Duke Jean Museum of Modern Art (MUDAM), Luxembourg; the Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany; Kunstmuseum St. Gallen, St. Gallen, Switzerland; Julia Stoschek Collection, Düsseldorf, Germany; Boros Collection, Berlin, Germany; Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin, Italy; K11 Art Foundation, Hong Kong, China; Long Museum, Shanghai, China; New Century Art Foundation, Beijing, China and among others.






    • Rhythm Of Singularity | Lai Fei

      To be honest, I don’t know how Guan Xiao does it. Looking at the ways she grabs and synthesizes materials in her work, it’s a bit like watching a contestant on The Brain1 microscopically examining a thousand goldfish. This isn’t a totally apt analogy, for today it’s nearly impossible to quantify—and to describe, even—just how much visual information we receive on a daily basis, via networks both visible and intangible. In this imploding society, everyone is caught in the constant flow of data, always susceptible to some form of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. What makes Guan’s work unique is her ability to maintain an extremely high level of concentration while pulling content and motifs from the massive material bank of the internet. In her process, she stays true to an internal worldview that is neither culturally specific nor general. In this dazzling world of data, she finds her own “basic logic” to connect forms.

    • Everyday Transformations: Guan Xiao | Ying Tan

      “In nova fert animus mutatas dicere formas corpora (I intend to speak of forms changed into new entities)”—Ovid, Metamorphoses


      Ovid opens the Metamorphoses (AD 8) with an explicit statement of intent. In the 250 myths that follow, the Roman poet chronicles the subject of transformation—sometimes in an arbitrary fashion, sometimes retelling well-known Greek fables, and sometimes straying in other, unexpected directions. One of these stories, which entered our collective consciousness, can be seen at Rome’s Galleria Borghese, where Giovanni Bernini’s famous sculpture tells the tale of the nymph Daphne in mid-metamor­phosis—her limbs turning into the twines of a laurel tree as she escapes from the love-stricken Apollo. Transformations occur in our everyday lives, too; we experience this in cinema, as film scores transport audiences sonically through visual imagery…

    • Be Here, Now: An Introduction to an Introduction | Stephanie Bailey


      “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there.”


      In autumn, 2000, New Literary History published an issue asking if there was life after identity politics, to which Marlon B. Ross responded: “Which ‘identity?’ What ‘politics?’ ‘After’ when and where?” Ross’s point was this: Before “identity politics” there was already a politics of identity—and “wherever there is identity, there is a struggle for power.” In the same issue, Eric Lott located this struggle within a “politics of participatory discrepancy,” created when emergent social movements collide and collude to form a dissonant social fabric composed of rampant intersections and interactions between groups. It is in this fabric that Lott located a potential for a unified, anti-normative politics, in which no one is represented by one movement, and no movement is expected to represent the entirety of a human being.

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