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May 9th 2019 - November 24th 2019

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Shen Jingdong Was Here by Shen Jingdong.

Location: Giardino Bianco Art Space, Castello 1814, 30122 Venice. Google maps link.

Opening hours: 10:00 - 18:00, closed Monday.

Shen Jingdong Was Here is a solo show by Shen Jingdong in collaboration with We Exhibit presented during the 58. Venice Biennale. Through contemporary cultural references and vivid imagery, the exhibition encourages visitors to embark on a playful yet meaningful reflection on the notion of contemporary. 

Shen Jingdong Was Here is an exhibition from the contemporary Chinese artist Shen Jingdong. The exhibition title recalls the ubiquitous graffiti tag 'I was here', frequently found in various contexts of contemporary urban China and beyond. It is a widely used phrase by people wanting to be remembered, as they use knives or other sharp tools to inscribe their mark as evidence of their presence on walls or bamboo.


In this sense, Jingdong considers himself as a tourist or a passer-by who seeks to make his presence known in the context of the Venice Biennale, one of the most important contemporary art events. To this end, the artist has decided to fill the exhibition space with a colourful array of balloons, creating an almost juvenile and naive atmosphere. Alongside the balloons are paintings of children with large, wide eyes - a characteristic component of Jingdong's work. The space is crowded and busy, like an amusement park, and the exhibition becomes a unique and original project that seems to transform into a fairy-tale theatre in the artistic fair ground that is the Venice Biennale.


The artist's son as well as his years of experience in the creation and study of contemporary art helped provide inspiration for the exhibition according to Jingdong. The various artworks on display including paintings and installations seek to create an engaging and stimulating environment for visitors. Through this seemingly frivolous and playful language, Shen Jingdong Was Here invites viewers to have fun, but to also reflect on the multifaceted notion of the contemporary. 


The exhibition is in partnership with We Exhibit.

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