Exhibition — 1 Oct 2005 until 21 Jan 2006

Solo-exhibition of the Chinese artist Yang Fudong (Beijing 1971) who lives and works in Shanghai.

Click below for an impression of the exhibition:

Yang Fudong (b. 1971) is part of a generation who have daily lived through the radical changes in contemporary Chinese society. A recurrent theme in his work is the loss of emotional feelings and anomie among this younger generation of Chinese. Eight of his films and video works and two photo series are being shown in the exhibition in Stedelijk Museum CS.

Yang Fudong’s work reveals, in a sometimes ironic manner, the difference between the characteristically traditional and Maoist China and modern, more Western influences. In doing this he makes use of various styles: tableaux vivants and slow images from nouvelle vague films and hilarious blow-ups of reality, as in films by Jim Jarmusch. Yang Fudong’s work however has no narrative lines: it remains visual impressions, full of close-ups or wide panoramas, with which spoken texts now and then raise existential or philosophical issues.

For example, in his films entitled Seven Intellectuals in Bamboo Forest, Fudong shows young people who are on their way to nature, then in close-ups their lives in the city, or about life in rural areas. He himself says of this series of films, ‘What I film is the life of contemporary youth, almost aloof. It has no concrete passage of time. Sometimes I think that life presently changes even more greatly. Many people seem to have become ‘non-believers’. They have lost their faith in everything.’ Seven Intellectuals in Bamboo Forest consists of two parts. The third part is probably going to have its premiere in Amsterdam.

The large installation Close to the Sea, consisting of ten simultaneous projections, shows an epic story of two lovers on the beach, and at the same time the pair’s shipwreck. Musicians are to be seen on the side screens, performing a symphony for wind instruments on the rocks along the coast. The whole is paradisiacal and threatening at the same time. Can the love come to further flowering and maintain itself? Can happiness survive a – in this case literal – shipwreck?

Yang Fudong lives and works in Shanghai. His idiosyncratic films and video works are presently being shown to great acclaim in museums all over the world.
The exhibition in Stedelijk Museum CS is a component of the Amsterdam China Festival, which is being held from September 30 through October 25, 2005.

A catalogue, published by the Vienna Kunsthalle, accompanies this exhibition. This catalogue will be on sale in the Museum shop after September 30. (86 pps., ISBN 3-85247-056-0, German / English)
An article by Maarten Bertheux, curator of this exhibition in Stedelijk Museum CS, will be included in Stedelijk Museum Bulletin 4/5 2005. The Bulletin will be on sale in the Museum shop and costs € 5,00.

SMCS on 11
Lectures and film presentations, among other events, will be organised to accompany the exhibition as part of SMCS on 11.