Tang Dixin (唐狄鑫, b. 1982) is a Shanghai-based contemporary artist working mainly with painting and performance art. Tang is one of the "80-hou" artists, a Chinese term for those who were born during the 1980s and are regarded as relatively liberal. Most of his works are related to the "body" which is oppressed in the Chinese society and art world.
Tang's performance works sometimes show radical aspects while also pursuing relations with others. "Act of God" (2010), is a performance where Tang jumped off a platform in the metro station during Expo 2010 Shanghai, and a train passed across his body. He documented the entire process in a video. As this act was reported in the news, it brought about a controversial discussion regarding the thin line between the artist's cynical expression of the contemporary Chinese society and his extreme illegal act. Tang's performances express the condition of the body in a "surveillance society" by challenging the use of body of the self and others in unusual ways. This methodology is not only effective in China but also applicable to the structure of art world as well as the emerging worldwide problems in accelerating globalization.
Interestingly, while Tang's performances dynamically and vigorously deal with society and others, his paintings give rather calm and reflective impressions as if he dived into himself. In his opinion, as he originally received orthodox Western art education in China, the medium of painting embodies the simplest relationship between objects while reflecting the complexity caused by his own reality and emotions. As he says, "I am seeking a part of myself that my body has forgotten"; his paintings express a "powerless body" which pursues mental freedom and emancipation while it accepts its own limits.
Tang's performances and paintings reflect and complement each other through the "body" as their axis. Sometimes his works focus on the external such as the society and others, and sometimes they gaze internally as he explores the methodology of painting expression in reflecting his pure inner self and emotions. Exploring these two polarities, Tang's works reflect on various issues in our contemporary society.
About the Artist: Tang Dixin (唐狄鑫, b. 1982, Hangzhou, China) lives and works in Shanghai. In 2005, he graduated from the Faculty of Painting, Shanghai Normal University, China. Tang's solo exhibitions include "Mr. Hungry" (2014), AIKE-DELLARCO, Shanghai, China and "Tang Dixin" (2014), Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo, Japan. He has also participated in notable group exhibitions such as "Absolute Collection Guideline" (2015), Sifang Art Museum, Nanjing, China, "10th Gwangju Biennale - Burning Down the House" (2014), Gwangju, Korea, "Revel - Celebrating MoCA's 8 Years in Shanghai" (2013), Museum of Contemporary Art, Shanghai, China, and "ON | OFF China's Young Artists in Concept and Practice" (2013), Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China.