DIVING DEEP FOR LIGHT INTO DARKNESS at Beiqiu Museum of Contemporary Art / Nanjing


Miriam Cahn/Chen Dandizi/Duan Zhengqu/Feng Zhixuan/Owen Fu/Fanny Gicquel/Hu Wei/Lyu Zhi-Qiang/Ma Kelu/Ma Shuqing/Pejvak/Gabriel Rico/Niclas Riepshoff/Su Chang/Hiroshi Sugimoto/Wang Zhongjie/Wu Shan/Zhao Yao

March 18 – June 30, 2022

Beiqiu Museum of Contemporary Art

Catherine Park, NO.1 Beijing East Road 

Nanjing, China

Beiqiu Museum of Contemporary Art (BMCA) is honored to announce that we are going to launch a new exhibition, “Diving Deep for Light into Darkness”. This group exhibition, curated by Yang Tiange, features more than 30 works by 18 Chinese and international artists of different ages. The exhibition will open on March 18, 2022, and run until June 30, 2022.
The exhibition “Diving Deep for Light into Darkness” takes the spatial geography and historical context of BMCA (which was once a bunker and is adjacent to the thousand-year-old Jiming Temple) as a jumping-off point for imagination, focusing on the body and the sensorial expedience in the environment, and presenting the undulating journey of the physical body sinking into obscurity and finding light in the dawn. As an extension of the museum’s pre-existing setting,the exhibition space is intentionally painted obscure, with both tunnels and cloisters, in order to create a sense of direction while still being perplexing and disorienting. We feel our way through the dark bunker, wander through the gaps among the rocks, walk into the inner cavity of the rocky space, as well as penetrate the human flesh to look inward at ourselves.
The exhibition distinguishes conceptually between the “bare body” and the “political body”, and emphasizes the former which has a more universal meaning, namely the body with sensibility and carrying the soul and spirit, rather than the ideological and identity-based body. The exhibition consists of three chapters. “Living Bodies, Unspeakable Illnesses” directly confronts the peculiarities of the body, particularly the sick body and hidden aches: burnt faces or swollen limbs, suffering from insomnia or depression, yet leaving a glimmer of light amid the gloom. “In Motion and Silence” is a collection of abstract paintings. Here, “abstraction” is interpreted as an accumulation of bodily gestures that point to a clear manifestation of spirituality. These works do not directly address the body as a subject but rather deal with the bodies and spirits of the artists behind the works: their works bear witness to a clear physical engagement, document the passage of time, present the accumulation of colors, and connect the thread of wandering lines – the art form and the creative process are the pivots between the body and the spirit. “In the Wilds In the Mountains In the Sea” echoes the physical sense of being among the rocks of BMCA, presenting the people in the realm of nature and their subtle feelings in it, suggesting the state of connection and symbiosis between the body and all creatures of nature.
In this context, intellectual activities such as gazing, interrogation, and investigation do not take precedence over bodily awareness such as experiencing, perceiving, and immersing. The exhibition attempts to build an organism: the most significant part is undoubtedly the artworks on display, which directly depict the body or indirectly indicate its existence; it also intends to awaken the viewer’s imagination of the artists’ bodies at the time of their creation, so that the artists behind the works can be recognized; in addition, the spatial reality of the museum allows the viewers to be included in the exhibition, who is also among the bodies that the exhibition attempts to evoke and mobilize. In “Diving Deep for Light into Darkness”, the triple forms of bodies interact with each other to create a chequered voyage between light and darkness.