Lin Tianmiao: SystemsJun 26, 2018 - Aug 26, 2018

Rockbund Art Museum (20 Huqiu Road, Huangpu District, Shanghai)
Alexandra Munroe
Lin Tianmiao
Rockbund Art Museum
Shanghai Museum of Glass
  • About the Exhibition

    From 26th June to 26th August 2018, Rockbund Art Museum is very proud to present Systems, the first institutional solo exhibition in Shanghai by Lin Tianmiao, curated by Alexandra Munroe, Samsung Senior Curator, Asian Art and Senior Advisor, Global Arts, at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, with Xiaorui Zhu-Nowell, Assistant Curator, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.

    The artist considers the exhibition to be a site-specific project exploring four key concepts: ‘individual consciousness’, ‘collective consciousness’, ‘public consciousness’, and ‘ultimate consciousness’. Each concept corresponds to a floor in the museum, from the second floor up to the sixth floor, as visitors embark on a sensorial journey of ‘consciousness’. The exhibition comprises a body of work representative of her practice over twenty years, together with several large-scale, interactive installations, which the artist has created recently in 2017, and have never been shown before to the public. Material of archival significance will also be exhibited at the same time.

    Since the early 1990s, as one of the first female Chinese artists tackling installation and video production, Lin Tianmiao has continuously explored various media throughout her practice. Using materials that evoke the traces and symbolism of feminine life such as cotton, thread, silk, fabric, and needles— she works on these materials by wrapping these everyday objects and covering them, thereby revealing her interest and reflection on everyday life and traditional handicrafts. With a unique imagination and perspective, she has proceeded to develop a distinctive, sensitive, and intricate deeply personal style. From early works such as Day-Dreamer, High !!! and Loss and Gain, visitors can become aware of the value the artist places on material and method, as well as an artistic practice filled with a tactile deftness and vitality. In 2017, after a twenty year practice, she made a break from the traditional media she became associated with, instead choosing to use glass—a man-made material widely used in modern life—in order to take on challenges never attempted before. Lin Tianmiao began a collaboration with Shanghai Museum of Glass; starting from the initial stages of grasping the peculiarities of glass, to investigating artisanal techniques, and then dealing with scientific issues such as ‘mechanical motion’ as a way to experiment within her installations. She has sought to achieve a balance between art, science, and technology, by involving a richer and more multi-faceted method of exploration. Precisely due to these concurrent and frequent shifts in material, methodology, and visual language , visitors familiar with Lin Tianmiao’s work will gain a new perspective to experience her oeuvre.

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  • About the artist

    Lin Tianmiao (b. 1961 in Taiyuan)  now lives and works in Beijing, China. Lin Tianmiao studied in the Fine Art department of Capital Normal University, Beijing, in 1984, before then travelling to the US to live there in 1988. After graduating from the Art Students League in New York in 1989, she worked as a designer in New York for nearly seven years. In 1995, Lin Tianmiao returned to China from New York.  Presenting The Temptation of St. Teresa, The Proliferation of Thread Winding, Pants, Trees, among others in an open studio, she thus laid out the important positions of her engagement in experimental art. It was also during this time, where she became known as one of the first Chinese female artists to gain international recognition. During the 1990s, when “apartment art” was a phenomenon in Beijing and Shanghai, Lin gained a great deal of experience. Lin’s early works are known for her practice of thread-binding where she binds the material—usually silk, hair, cotton, or felt—tightly around found or manufactured objects. Initially tasked by her mother to spool cotton as a young girl, Lin later reclaimed this act. Lin’s work can be regarded as a study into her own social role and the relationship between identity and social context, exploring questions related to female identity. In 1998, Lin and Wang Gongxin created the Loft Media Center. She had been responsible for everything, from infrastructure and interior decoration, to the design, supervision, equipment management, and its organization, etc. This laid the foundation for the hosting of hundreds of cultural events in the future. In 2012, the Asia Society Museum in New York presented Bound Unbound, the artist’s first major solo museum exhibition in the US.

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  • About the Curator

    Alexandra Munroe, PhD, Samsung Senior Curator, Asian Art, and Senior Advisor, Global Arts, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, is a pioneering authority on modern and contemporary Asian art and transnational art studies. She has led the Guggenheim's Asian art program since its founding in 2006 while also working on the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi Museum and the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative. She convenes the museum’s biannual Asian Art Council, a curatorial think tank, and directs The Robert H.N. Ho Family Foundation initiative in contemporary Chinese art.

    Munroe has organized many award winning and critically acclaimed exhibitions that have promoted international scholarship and recognition on modern and contemporary Asian art. She is recognized for launching the international critical appraisal of artists Cai Guo-Qiang, Daido Moriyama, Yayoi Kusama, Lee Ufan, Mu Xin, and Yoko Ono, among others, and for bringing such historic avant-garde movements as Gutai, Mono-ha, Korean Tanseakwa and most recently, Chinese conceptual art, to international attention. 

    Raised in Japan, Munroe was former Vice President of Japan Society, New York, and former director of its museum. She holds an MA from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, and a PhD in History from New York University. She serves on the advisory boards of Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai and is a trustee of the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, New York. 



    online view of LinTianmiao exhibition

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