Artificial Rock A57 2006


Artificial Rock A57

As one of China's most famous sculptors, Zhan Wang presents his Artificial Rock series as a modern reinterpretation of a tradition that reveres strangely eroded rocks, a custom that began in the gardens of the Song Dynasty. His method for recreating these rocks is to mold sheets of stainless steel around the surface of a traditional Chinese scholar’s rock to replicate the complexity of their textures, weld them together, and burnish their surfaces to create a sculpture in the same shape as the original rock. It is said that it takes about ten craftsmen a whole year to polish the stainless steel surfaces. Wang has used this same method to create many other odd-shaped rocks, both big and small, in stainless steel. He has also noticed the surroundings reflected on the surface of his works, which he has made into photographic works. His works truly encompass the major themes of nature and the environment.

Exhibition period: Until May 9, 2021


Born in Beijing, China in 1962; lives and works in China. Zhan is widely recognized as one of China’s leading contemporary artists today. In his work that primarily encompasses sculpture and installation, he challenges ideas of landscape and environment, addressing issues related to its urban, rural, artificial and industrial aspects. In addition to international exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale(Chinese Pavilion, 2003) and major museums worldwide, Zhan created a series of outdoor “public” artworks from 2000 to 2004, including New Plan to Patch the Sky, Mount Everest, Inlay the Great Wall. He is best known for his stainless steel sculpture series titled “Artificial Rock” that adopts the motif of fantastically shaped rock formations, or the “scholars’ rocks,” of traditional Chinese gardens.