Sundaram Tagore Singapore is pleased to announce an exhibition of gravity-defying metal sculptures by celebrated Beijing-based artist Zheng Lu. On view will be new works, pieces from his iconic Water in Dripping series, and the monumental installation that garnered international attention at Art Stage Singapore this year.
Transforming the gallery space, Zheng’s restless stainless steel forms leap across the room evoking splashes of water suspended mid-air. His works are composed of thousands of Chinese characters, which are laser-cut into metal then hand-welded together in a fashion similar to linking chainmail. The interlocking forms are then molded into dynamic compositions. What results are ethereal sculptures that are technically astonishing; their fluid, animated forms are charged with energy or qi. “The manner in which light passes through the hollow sculpture makes my work appear weightless, which dissolves the traditional idea of sculptures being solid and grounded,” says the artist.
Zheng’s art is deeply influenced by his study of traditional Chinese calligraphy. A native of Inner Mongolia, he grew up practicing calligraphy with his grandfather and transcribing poetry for his father, a man of letters. His early works referenced Chinese calligraphy scrolls. He began carving characters into the surface of stainless steel sheets introducing negative spaces. The punctured metal pieces transformed a heavy, cold medium into something both physically and psychologically lighter and more engaging.
The works from his Water in Dripping series are composed of text from the renowned Tang dynasty poet Bai Juyi’s Appreciation of Still Water. Here, not only does Zheng celebrate the power of water, an element essential to our existence, but he also revels in Bai’s unfettered imagination. His most recent works continue his exploration of water while evoking Chinese literati concepts of a contemplative journey within nature. By using characters from texts of historical significance, he also draws on the custom of apprentices copying masters’ works yet pushes this idea further by introducing new interpretations and possibilities.
A leading figure of his generation, Zheng Lu graduated from Lu Xun Fine Art Academy, Shenyang, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in sculpture in 2003. In 2007, he received his Master of Fine Arts degree in sculpture from the Central Academy of Fine Art, Beijing, while also attending an advanced study program at École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts in Paris in 2006 after being awarded the LVMH Young Artists' Award.
Zheng Lu (b. 1978) has participated in numerous exhibitions in China and abroad, including at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei; Museum on the Seam, Jerusalem; The Ekaterina Cultural Foundation, Moscow; Musée Océanographique, Monaco; Musée Maillol, Paris; the National Museum of China, Beijing and the Shanghai Duolun Museum of Modern Art, Shanghai. His work is in collections worldwide including the Long Museum, Shanghai; Suzhou Museum, China; and the UBS collection.
For more information on the exhibition, firstname.lastname@example.org or call +65 6694 3378.