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Vol.17 Ping An Exhibition, Ren Zhe

Earlier this month on 2 January, Ren Zhe unveiled to the public another striking solo-exhibition entitled, “Genesis”. Stemming from the success of “Qi”, a major exhibition which was held inside Taimiao at the Forbidden City in Beijing, “Genesis” takes a somewhat different and unconventional curatorial approach. During these challenging times, the artist has envisioned a show that incorporates art installation - an element which aims to draw viewers closer to Ren Zhe’s works inside an immersive pavilion space. To Ren Zhe, he believes that our lives are a reflection of our thoughts. Throughout this exhibition, the artist encourages the audience to rediscover their original aspirations as well as a youthful sensibility that lies within each individual.

Located at the Ping An Finance Centre in Shenzhen spanning across 4000 square metres, the exhibition features 15 monumental sculptures. Positioned gallantly within their spacious setting, these works of art display the artist’s pursuit in exploring the materiality of traditional Chinese culture through a contemporary lens.

On the night of the opening, Ren Zhe brought together a collective of creatives, inviting various performing artists to celebrate artistic virtuosity and cultural diversity. As the city lit up that evening, the artists all offered a spectacular visual feast for the audience.

Displayed in “Genesis” is Ren Zhe’s large-scale 12 Zodiacs series. These sculptures were once exhibited at the “Qi” exhibition in 2019 and they had attracted widespread attention amongst viewers. Reflecting the artist’s understanding of time, the twelve sculptures embody a full cycle - portraying each animal’s idiosyncratic personalities and its reputed attributes. Despite their differences as individuals, they signify an unyielding bond. Together, these sculptures demonstrate harmony and unity within our society. Ren Zhe encourages the audience to find themselves and seek for their own personal sense of purpose.

“Genesis” also marks an important milestone for Ren Zhe and his newest sculpture, “The Homecoming Warrior”. Made in plated red stainless steel with a mirror finish, this work of art can be understood as a mature formulation of the artist’s acclaimed warrior series. It recalls a moment when one has weathered every storm whilst retaining a youthful frame of mind and is prepared to accept further challenges ahead.

The exhibition will run until 3 April 2021. In a world that is more divided than ever, Ren Zhe hopes that “Genesis” will awaken our senses and motivate people to embrace unity. More importantly, the artist aims to demonstrate China’s indomitable spirit and power as an undivided nation.

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