A&T@ The Third Edition: UNKNOWN by YIN Xiuzhen


A&T@ The Third Edition

UNKNOWN is the third iteration of the A&T@ Project initiated at Chronus Art Center, and another notable outcome of continued collaborations between ZHI and CAC. A&T@ supports leading Chinese artists working in traditional media to venture into otherwise inaccessible channels of advanced programming and production facilities by pairing them with technologists to develop works that are unique and different from their established artistic vocabulary and formal strategies, thus opening up new horizons, furthering the experimental potential for these artists and, in turn, contributing to the development of art making in the twenty-first century. Previous collaborating artists: LIU Xiaodong (Weight of Insomnia) and YAN Lei (Rêverie Reset).


UNKNOWN Project Team

Concept: YIN Xiuzhen
Produced by: Chronus Art Center
A&T@Project Concept: ZHANG Ga

Chronus Art Center (Staff)
Project Leadership: BI Xin, CAO Daxu, Vytas Jankauskas | Technology Lead: Vytas Jankauskas | Emotion recognition, star map to 3D sculpture processing, sound: Vytas Jankauskas | News screen displays and general interfaces: Fito Segrera | Star map graphics: Miller Kilstner | Production Manager: CAO Daxu | Production Assistant: YAO Jiawen | Documentary Direction and Production: CAO Daxu | Editorial and Translation: CAO Jiamin

Director: Valerie Wang, Conghui | Executive Curator: YU Haining | Operation Manager: SUN Rulan | Administration Executive: MAO Li | Visual Designer: LUO Shan | Operation Assistant: HU Jiahui | Curatorial Assistant: HAN Lu | Intern: QU Mingxiao | Intern: ZENG Peiyuan
With the monumental installation UNKNOWN, which spans across three floors of the ZHI ART MUSEUM, artist YIN Xiuzhen has created an awestriking work that transforms the exigencies of world affairs and flux of emotions into constellations of heavenly bodies, in which fleeting human presences catalyze and transpire a universe of ephemerality and uncertainty.
Six display screens constantly feed news headlines from global hot spots, out of which an AI system generates endless nebula formations which are shown on the adjacent mammoth Starmap, a four-meter in diameter custom-made circular LED screen, which soars into the clearing that crosses three floors of the museum. Visitors' facial expressions captured while reading news, again trigger a cluster of celestial objects to appear. The object, an aggregate of some of YIN's previous work interpreted by an AI algorithm, displays distinctive motion behaviors fed by visitors’ emotional data. Meditative 'om' chants as well as excerpts of news of recent world events: COVID-19, Black Lives Matter, global food shortages, etc., fusing with sounds from deep space and sounds of emotions, compound into a murmuring soundscape, often beyond recognition.
Ascending to the upper level, visitors encounter an expansive space embraced by undulating hills and rivers seen through surround glass walls. Over the course of the exhibition, numerous 3D printed celestial objects will "float" atop of transparent plinths one by one. Generated from the collective data aggregated every day, the objects are the assemblages of human emotions solidified into cosmic existence, tangibles transformed from the virtual.
Thus, YIN’s artistic sensibilities, typically characterized by the intimate human touch in her work, her solicitude for tradition and community, extend into a new horizon of stellar grandeur, cohabited by machine intelligence and human emotions, beckoning for a new humanism of cosmic dimension that is at once immense and minute, celestially untouchable and emotively present. Earth and heaven comingle in equally unstable media, forever changing and forever.



YIN Xiuzhen (b.1963, Beijing, China), a leading female figure in Chinese contemporary art, began her career in the early 1990s following her graduation from Capital Normal University in Beijing where she received a B.A. in oil painting from the Fine Arts Department in 1989. Her artworks have since been shown extensively in various international exhibitions. Best known for her works that incorporate second-hand objects, YIN uses her artwork to explore modern issues of globalization and homogenization. By utilizing recycled materials such as sculptural documents of memory, she seeks to personalize objects and allude to the lives of specific individuals, which are often neglected in the drive toward excessive urbanization, rapid modern development and the growing global economy. The artist explains, "In a rapidly changing China, 'memory' seems to vanish more quickly than everything else. That's why preserving memory has become an alternative way of life." Her recent solo exhibition Abandoned Garden opened at Meilun Art Museum in 2019. She has participated in Global(e) Resistance at Centre Pompidou and The Allure of Matter at the Smart Museum of Art (Chicago) in 2020, the 58th Venice Biennale, Media Networks at Tate Modern (London) and Hangzhou Triennial of Fiber Art in 2019.


Date:19.09.2020- unknown
Time:10:00-17:00 from Wednesday to Sunday (closed on Monday and Tuesday)
Address:ZHI ART MUSEUM, No.1 Junshan Road, Xinjin, Chengdu, China
Admission:30 RMB / person The ticket purchase method will be announced soon. Free admission on the opening receiption, RSVP
Organized by:Chronus Art Center, ZHI ART MUSEUM