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Zhou Song:

Mass Energy

22 April - 11 June, 2023

Osthaus Museum (Hagen, Germany)


Tayfun Belgin

The Osthaus Museum Hagen will exhibit works by Zhou Song in the Folkwang-Altbau in 2023. Zhou Song is an internationally acclaimed, immensely innovative artist. In his three series created so far, the artist processes very different pictorial worlds, which on the one hand appear realistic, and later are hyper-realistically overformed to finally form a completely new reality. His investigations into the role of art in our time, which is defined more by uncertainty than by its opposite, reveals on the one hand a preference for technical structures, on the other hand this love is fed by a deep knowledge of philosophical contemplation. Past, present, and future are repeatedly brought into a specific relationship in Zhou Song's world of thought. Ultimately, philosophy has the claim to penetrate beyond worldly things into the inner of our beingness - no matter whether this is formed in an eastern or western way. It is the origins, underlying structures, and evolution of humanity as well as the universe as a whole that help shape the art of this restless mind of Zhou Song - beyond the banal everyday, beyond politics and its inner turmoil. At the Osthaus Museum Hagen, the central theme is painting, and here Zhou Song's interest coincides with our focus. His excursions into the art of watercolor, sculpture, or three-dimensional objects in general enrich the central medium. What can be observed in his art is an abundantly clear mastery of drawing technique, as well as his strict and sovereign control over the principles of design. The diverse series, which display a magnificent spectrum, namely: leading from the exploration of the self (Red Field), to the existence of the universe (Entropy), to the reflection on our living conditions in the real world (Inflating) are comprehensively anthropological. This, of course, includes Zhou Song's penchant for the symbolic. The German scientist and man of letters, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe conceived symbol as an exclusive force that was able to represent the general in the particular. In a broader sense from today's perspective, Zhou Song seeks this kind of transformation in his art: thoughts enter the artwork and are formed into a specific entity there.

Installation Views


ZHOU SONG‘S WORLD VIEW Zhou Song is an internationally acclaimed and innovative artist. In his work, the artist pictures varied pictorial worlds, which on the one hand appear realistic but gradually reveal themselves as hyper-realistic reshapings of completely new realities. What does our reality comprise? How is our current existence defined? Are we inclined to see the future positively or do we side with those who believe that the apocalypse coming? These questions cannot be answered with a simple yes or no since they concern complex developments that concern both the individual human individual and relate to surrounding social contexts, the country, the state, and humankind in general. Art does not provide an answer to these questions any more than politics do, nor do wise thinkers who grapple with traditional philosophical queries. But art has the possibility, through content and techniques, to show people things that they have not perceived before—and this also impacts the works of Zhou Song.



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