Gallery Film and Contemporary Chinese Art: On Yang Fudong’s Beyond GOD and Evil-First Chapter and Endless Peaks

  • Bingxi WANG (Speaker)

Activity: Talks or PresentationsOther Invited Talks or Presentations


Gallery film refers to cinematic installations mounted to be displayed in the gallery space in an attempt to converge film and contemporary art. As such, gallery film signifies the evolution of film presentation from a black-box screen to a white-cube space, a characteristic of contemporary art. This research examines Yang Fudong's (b. 1971) two exhibitions Beyond GOD and Evil-First Chapter (Suzhou Museum, September to December 2019) and Endless Peaks (ShanghART Gallery, November 2020 to January 2021) by employing theories from art history as well as film and media studies, including theories of Chinese landscape painting, discourses of the picturesque, spectatorship, and such thinkers as André Bazin and Maurice Merleau-Ponty. Following Gene Youngblood's "expanded cinema," I argue that Yang has extended the boundaries of film viewing by integrating Chinese landscape ink painting and video art into his gallery films. Yang's creative strategy, specifically his use of multiple screens and classical Chinese landscape painting in creating a new mode of cinematic viewing in the white cube setting, distinguishes him from other gallery film artists. I call this practice a type of landscape-scroll film installation, characterized by ambiguity, an epistemological void that invites a hermeneutic unpacking. Gallery film is vital to the understanding and appreciation of Yang Fudong's works and my study seeks to fill in the gaps of prior studies of Yang's gallery films, which tend to center on socio-political aspects, but lack in-depth analysis informed by concepts of gallery film and contemporary art.
Period20 May 2022
Event titleGallery Film and Contemporary Chinese Art: On Yang Fudong's Beyond GOD and Evil-First Chapter and Endless Peaks
Event typeSeminar
LocationHong KongShow on map