Book launch | The form of reality: Liu Xiaohui. Edouard Malingue Gallery


The Form of Reality: Liu Xiaohui is a monograph and case study examining the practice of contemporary painter Liu Xiaohui over the past decade. The substantial publication of over 30,000 words written by art critic and curator He Jing brings together over 100 reproductions of Liu Xiaohui’s paintings and a large number of documents made and used in the creation process. It is published by Culture and Art Publishing House and will be available from June 2021. Via ten interconnected chapters, this monograph delineates a topographical map of Liu Xiaohui’s art, giving an overview of the painter’s singular creative journey, addressing a series problems concerning the ontological aspect of contemporary painting. These questions all relate to the “Real”, which is the absolute theme of Liu’s painting, and the diverse and uncertain creative forms that flow from this theme. As a result, the monograph is edited, composed and structured in an unconventional way, presenting textual and critical ‘fragments’ and presenting an additional layer of dynamic hermeneutical texts that include artist’s notes, historical references and images. . It aims to approach a capital “Shape of the Real” both on the dimension of the textual and that of the image – a “Form” which concerns at the same time painting, book and writing. It attempts to sketch an experimental form of publications by artists emerging between the conceptual and the methodological, research and criticism. On the occasion of the book launch, Professor Wang Min’an (School of Humanities, Tsinghua University), artist Liu Xiaohui the author of the publication He Jing (art critic, curator) will have a conversation and a sharing event at UCCA, moderated by Zhang Yuling (art historian, writer). In addition to sharing the realization of the monograph, the event will also offer an in-depth discussion on Liu Xiaohui’s practice and the aesthetic issues of contemporary painting.
About the guests

Wang min’an
Wang Min’an is a professor in the School of Humanities at Tsinghua University. His main research interests are critical theory, cultural studies, modern art and literature. He is the author of 11 books, including Roland Barthes, Michel Foucault’s limit, and Friedrich Nietzsche and the body. He is the editor-in-chief of Humanities and Society Translation Series (published by Henan University Press), Produce series, etc …

Liu Xiaohui
Liu Xiaohui is an artist. He currently teaches in the mural painting department of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. His creative practice seeks precision and the “real” in the repeated experience of painting. For him, the act of painting is both the construction of artistic experience, and the dissolution of said experience in life. The process of moving, generating and merging between the two clearly reveals the true meaning of the painting. In recent years, the repeated portrayal, erasure and concealment of similar themes and patterns have become the main body of Liu’s painting, resulting in further obscuring of the image and increasingly precise calibrations of the pictorial experience revealed by this. In the magnified moments of life and the daily “work” of painting, Liu Xiaohui anchors his relationship with painting by repeatedly affirming and denying “the experience of the present”.

He Jing
He Jing is an art critic, curator and young scholar. His research focuses mainly on the relations between concept and image in the field of philosophy of art, in particular the research of modern and contemporary painting and image through the prism of philosophy and French phenomenology. She devotes herself to experimental writing in contemporary art criticism.

She was the founding editor-in-chief of the French edition of LEAP magazine, as well as deputy editor and editor-in-chief of its international edition; research director of the Mao Ji-Hong Arts Foundation; and has organized numerous exhibitions, conferences and screening programs in institutions such as the Center National Editions Art et Image (CNEAI), the Center Georges Pompidou, the Musée de l’Hospice Comtesse in Lille, the Fudan University School of Philosophy, OCAT, 798 Art Center, the Jimei x Arles International Photo Festival, PHOTOFAIRS San Francisco and other academic institutions and platforms in China and abroad.

About the moderator

Zhang Yuling
Zhang Yuling is an art historian and writer. A graduate of Peking University and Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne University, she obtained a doctorate in art history and archeology. She is a longtime editor for art history columns in magazines such as Sanlian’s Life Week Magazine, Wissen and While reading. She is the author of The song played by the instruments is not as good as the songs sung by man – Power and Body in the History of Western Ancient Art and Aesthetics. She is also a translator of Medieval society, Micropsychoanalysis, I am writing to you from China …, and Kant and Bergsonism.

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