Memory Goes As Far As This Morning

The Museum of Contemporary Art Chengdu, China

23rd Sept  — 8th Nov 2016

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Beginning September 23rd, 2016, Chengdu MOCA is pleased to present the exhibition ‘Memory goes as far as this morning’, with two established artists of different backgrounds: Gideon Rubin (Israel / UK) and Shu Qun (China).  
2016年9月23日,成都当代美术馆展出了由郭小晖策划的双人展“记忆成为早晨”。参展包括舒群和以色列艺术家Gideon Rubin。

The title of this exhibition, quoted from a poem by the noted Chinese poet Bei Dao, alludes to the disposable nature of 'news': The nation has lost its memory / Memory goes as far as this morning. Memory and history are universal themes, explored by artists throughout time. In this exhibition in Chengdu, both artists filter history and memories, each from his own unique perspective, while the audience is invited to revisit their own past experiences. 

The curatorial task in “Memory goes as far as this morning” has been to bring the two artists with their contrasting backgrounds into dialogue on this particular subject, prompting the audience to relate to themes like ‘taboo’, ‘erasure’ and ‘disappearance’, through the artists’ portraiture and their use of mass-media source material.

The works in this exhibition seem to drag the past into the present-time, securing imagery from memories and from history while reinterpreting and translating it. A maze of portraits and facial expressions in the case of Shu, and the erasure of facial features in the case of Rubin, make up a unique visual trove reflecting personal memories, identities and cultural histories. Off-base and in dialogue with Shu Qun who is working on home territory, the museum show in Chengdu presents for Rubin a unique opportunity to engage with a new audience in China, and this, particularly as both artists have shared common source material - using Hua Bao (a period Chinese picture magazine), in Rubin’s case in response to his exposure to Chinese culture and history during a two-month residency in Shenzhen in 2014.
展出的作品似乎试图把观众拉回了过去的年代,使记忆和历史中的图像以另一种方式再一次呈现在眼前。舒群作品中以肖像及面部表情组成的谜题和Rubin作品中面部五官的缺失,构成了个人记忆、身份和文化历史独一无二的存档。其中,Rubin 带来了他2014年在深圳的艺术家驻地期间的作品。两位艺术家尽管有着共通的素材来源,但他们的创作却上升至了不同的维度。两者的创作媒介都是基于对特定时期中国画报的运用,但通过从不同角度切入话题,这个展览不仅使观众开始审视自己与流行意象的关系,也对自身的记忆与历史进行发问。