Zhu Jinshi: Boat

This monumental installation is constructed of Xuan paper, bamboo and cotton thread, embodying the artist’s idea to “infinitely extend every moment.” The sheer size and visual impact of the Boat is in stark contrast with the delicate nature of the material from which it is made.

Xuan paper, commonly used in Chinese calligraphy and traditional painting, was originally produced in Jing County, Anhui during the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907 AD). As well as its historical and cultural significance the paper is renowned for being soft, strong, fine textured and resistant to creasing, mould and deterioration. A large number of ancient Chinese books and paintings that have survived to this day are well preserved on Xuan paper.

Zhu Jinshi has described the function of the Boat:  “Whereas time only moves forward, the Boat can be sailed in any direction. The Boat’s cultural resonance is constructed of time itself, continuously ebbing and flowing through our imagination.”

The installation is representative of the art of ‘Yi Pai’, where the artist’s fascination with time is transformed into a physical manifestation.

Zhu Jinshi was born in Beijing in 1954, moving to Germany in the mid-1980s. At present he lives and works in Beijing. He participated in the Stars group exhibition, the first avant-garde art exhibition after Cultural Revolution. Zhu’s works are represented in many private and public collections both in China and abroad.