Exhibitions, Film

Chinese photographer Cheng Ran exhibits three-month residency at New York’s The New Museum

Image: Cheng Ran, In Course of the Miraculous, 2015 (still). Wide-screen HD film, 5.1 surround sound, color; 468 min. Courtesy the artist, K11 Art Foundation, Erlenmeyer Foundation, and Galerie Urs Meile, Beijing-Lucerne © Cheng Ran, courtesy The New Museum

Emerging Chinese artist Cheng Ran is gaining his first US solo exhibition at New York's The New Museum, the culmination of his three-month residency at the Museum, part of a new partnership with China's K11 Art Foundation.

One of the most promising Chinese artists of his generation, Cheng Ran, born 1981 in Inner Mongolia, China, works largely in film and video, and draws widely from both Western and Chinese literature, poetry, cinema, and visual culture.

The artist will debut a new multi-video installation.  Cheng Ran: Diary of a Madman, which  borrows its title from what is widely considered China’s first modern short story, written by Lu Xun in 1918.

Just as Lu Xun’s story comprises first-person narratives of a character at the margins of society who gradually turns mad, Cheng’s fifteen new videos take the form of diaristic vignettes that reveal a larger assessment of a foreign place through the eyes of an outsider.

As a first-time visitor to the United States, Cheng Ran approaches New York with an awareness of iconic and cinematic images of the city, simultaneously intending to find and capture what is typically excluded from such views.

The New Museum residency was initiated in partnership with K11 Art Foundation (KAF) to support the production of new works by an emerging Chinese artist. KAF has, since 2010, supported a series of artist residencies in China.

Adrian Cheng, Founder and Honorary Chairman of K11 Art Foundation, said: “We are delighted to have collaborated with the New Museum on Cheng Ran’s residency and this extraordinary resultant exhibition. The K11 Art Foundation (KAF) and the New Museum are united by our shared vision of championing outstanding and innovative contemporary artists.

“Cheng Ran is an artist with whom we have had the pleasure of working with on various projects as his career has developed and we are thrilled to be working with the New Museum on his first US solo exhibition.”

In conjunction with the exhibition, the New Museum will screen a special seven-hour cut of Cheng’s nine-hour film In Course of the Miraculous, 2015, edited by the artist for this occasion.

The film was originally produced by K11 Art Foundation and its founder Adrian Cheng, and premiered at the 2015 Istanbul Biennial. Screenings take place every Wednesday during regular Museum hours.

Cheng Ran: Diary of a Madman is on view in the Lobby Gallery from October 19, 2016–January 15, 2017. Visit here for more information.