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Chu Chu Photography: Material Immaterial 2014
by Three Shadows Photography Art Centre
Location: ThreeShadows +3 Gallery
Artist(s): CHU Chu
Date: 31 Oct - 28 Dec 2014

Three Shadows +3 Gallery will present “Chu Chu: Photography : Material Immaterial,” a solo exhibition of nearly 30 works by artist Chu Chu. “Material Immaterial” reevaluates daily items through hazy yet imposing images that transcend spatial presence by removing these objects from their usual contexts. Chu Chu takes these objects out of actual time and space, and throws them back into a renegotiation of time and space that interpret “objects” and the dual nature of reality as both hidden and exposed.

Chu Chu studied with Wang Dongling, Qiao Jian, and Zhang Peili. Born to a family of artists, she began to study painting at age five. She went on to study design in high school and oil painting in college. Her master’s degree focused on video and photography, and her doctoral work is dedicated to calligraphy. Her interdisciplinary understanding of the classics, music, and art have allowed her to stand outside the subjects of her work, so that she can deconstruct them, and attempt to define their relationship to her. In 2011, she won the Shiseido Prize at the Three Shadows Photography Award. In 2010, she received the first cutting edge Fhoto Award. She participated in more than 40 exhibitions in China and abroad.

As the artist says, “‘It’ refers to the tools as material, poetic objects. ‘Not It’ refers to a mechanized society. Tools in a mechanized society require a special photographic perspective and black and white tones to make us question their existence.” 

Chu Chu has taken unimportant daily items out of their usual places and isolated them. The viewer sees them on a single plane, silent; the objects still appear three-dimensional, despite the fabricated space in which they are presented. These items do not rely on anything; they are strictly independent. They give the viewer the chance to look up with reverence at the trivial and ordinary. At this point, the object is like a body, drawing the viewer into those serious black and white tones and fabricated spatial-temporal relationships.

Chu Chu began “Material Immaterial” in 2006. “Material Immaterial. Blade” represents the first time that the artist will combine her picture of knives with calligraphy painting. The collision of photographs and calligraphy have provided Chu with a new starting point for her work. She blends learning and craftsmanship, but she has changed them in new ways. She used digital printing to create distant landscapes, which places each of the objects within the same fabricated space. These landscapes are taken using a traditional large-format camera and then she develops the silver gelatin film in a darkroom before digitization. The dignified, mysterious aura of the pictures make people more comfortable with a space they do not fully understand. The images cleverly conceal Chu Chu’s reflections on duality: visible and hidden, time and space, together and apart.

About Chu Chu

Chuchu was born in Hangzhou, Zhejiang. She works and lives in Hangzhou. She obtained a bachelor degree in Oil Painting, then she went on study New Media in her master degree. She is currently pursuing doctor degree in Art Study. She has participated in many solo and group exhibitions in galleries and institutions world-wide, including: ThreeShadows +3 Gallery (Beijing), Minsheng Art Museum (Shanghai), Stavanger Kunstmuseum (Stavanger, Norway), Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris).

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