Chinese sculptor Shi Zhongying is currently in London contemplating the relationship between sculpture and landscape in preparation for his new body of work. Shi, Professor of Art and Design at Beijing Forestry University, is travelling on an overseas research fellowship granted by the China Artists Association. The research fellowship, now in its fifth year, will enable Shi to expose his Chinese artistic perspective to the broader international art scene.
Working predominantly in metals, Shi takes inspiration from Buddhist teachings and Chinese philosophy in the context of contemporary life. The gridded or meshed surfaces of his sculptures capture “non-existent” abstract forms of objects which once existed, immortalizing the memory of their physical presence. In this way, Shi’s work reflects upon the Buddhist objective of the ultimate elimination of self, a concept which he believes is meaningful for contemporary society.
The UK research fellowship is intended to inspire a new evolution in Shi’s practice, which he sees as moving in the direction of symbolic representations of landscape. His research will take in some of the UK’s well known sculpture parks and museums. Shi is represented by Red Gate Gallery, one of China’s most active promoters of Chinese contemporary art. His works have been exhibited at the National Art Museum of China and internationally. Shi’s most recent body of work will be on display in an upcoming solo exhibition at Red Gate Gallery, Beijing, in October 2014. He will be in the UK until 27 September.