Since the 1980s, artists working in China have experimented with various materials, transforming seemingly everyday objects into large-scale artworks. These artists have exploded fireworks into paintings, felted hair into gleaming flags, stretched pantyhose into monochromatic artworks, deconstructed old doors and windows to make sculptures, and even skillfully molded porcelain into gleaming black flames. Artists continue to explore and develop this creative mode, with some devoting decades of their practice to experiments with a single material. For the first time, The Allure of Matter: Material Art from China brings together works in which conscious material choice has become a means of the artists’ expression, representing this unique trend throughout recent history. The exhibition is a collaboration between four major American museums; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Smart Museum of Art in Chicago, the Seattle Art Museum and the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA.
“The Warhol Foundation aims to support the full range of artistic activity in America—from exhibitions at major museums to neighborhood projects by artist collectives. Arts writers, through the range and specialization of their individual interests, touch upon all of this activity—illuminating and interrogating it and bringing it into conversation with the public. Support for artists is not complete without support for the circulation and serious consideration of their ideas. The Arts Writers Grant program keeps artists at the center of cultural dialogue and debate—in our opinion, right where they belong.”
Joel Wachs, President