Ren Ri (b. 1984)

Ren Ri was born in 1984 in Harbin, China, he studied Fine Art at Tsinghua University and then received his Masters at Saint-Petersburg Herzen State University, Russia. He has a PhD in Fine Art from Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing. Ren Ri has won and been nominated for several international awards and contests in the arts.

Ren Ri’s art is signified by the very special medium he uses: beeswax. Considered an unusual and difficult material to work with Ren Ri’s understanding of bees psychology and nature assist him in his creative process. He works in collaboration with insects to create his mesmerizing sculptures. To manipulate natural processes the artist must find a balance cooperating with nature to accomplish his artistic goals. The artist’s most famous series – Yuansu I, II and III – are all related to his intimate experiences with bees. Ren Ri started to learn the craft of beekeeping in 2006 and after several years he felt knowledgeable enough to begin using beeswax as his primary medium. His first series, Yuansu I: The Origin of Geometric Series (2007) incorporates a number of beeswax maps. In his second series he moves from investigating movement to psychology through collaboration between his bees and Ren Ri himself. The artist placed the queen in the middle of the box and let other bees build around her. Every few days he changed the position of the box. Resulting in Yuansu II, a series of stunning geometrical sculptures. Yuansu III is a performance showing the relationships between humans and bees – Ren Ri offers himself as a surface, pushes bees into his face and subsequently gets stung numerous times.

This young artist has been exhibited internationally, exhibitions he has been featured in include: Carve & New Media, 798 Art District, Beijing, China (2007), Fame Di Terra, Milan, Italy, 6th Art Laguna Exhibition, Venice, Italy (both in 2012), Fusion Convergence at T Museum in Hangzhou, China (2014) and Kaiserring Stipendiat 2015: Ren Ri at Mönchehaus Museum, Goslar, Germany in 2015 after he received his Kaiserring Award.