25 Apr 2024

Zhu Jinshi’s Rice Paper Pagoda on show at the 60th Venice International Biennale, China Pavilion

ZHU JINSHI b. 1954, China, Rice Paper Pagoda, 2024, Xuan paper, bamboo,
cotton thread, steel frame, LED light strips, H8.5 x dia. 3.5 m (H334 5/8 x dia. 137 3/4 in.)

Pearl Lam is delighted to announce that gallery artist Zhu Jinshi’s large-scale rice paper installation Rice Paper Pagoda will be exhibited at the 60th Venice International Art Biennale’s China Pavilion exhibition project, Atlas: Harmony in Diversity, curated by Professor Wang Xiaosong of Zhejiang University and independent curator Jiang Jun.

Rice Paper Pagoda consists of thousands of sheets of rice paper, thin bamboo, cotton thread, LED light strips, and metal infrastructures. The hand-crumpled, lightweight rice paper forms countless subtle creases, evoking an ever-changing rock wall. The neatly arranged airy material resembles the eaves and tiles of an ancient temple, reinterpreting the sense of material thickness/patina brought on by centuries of weathering, achieved through the white rice paper. The work was first completed in Chengdu with the nearby former residence of Du Fu, a renowned poet from the Tang Dynasty, sparking inspiration for the artist. Du Fu’s famous line ‘If I could get a mansion with a thousand, ten thousand rooms…’ resonates with the essence of the work.

Zhu Jinshi started to use rice paper in his installations in the late 1980s to improve his conceptual expression and spatial morphology. His major monumental rice paper installations include Wave of Materials, co-collected by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago; Tao of Xuan Paper, collected by the Vancouver Art Gallery; and Boat, which has been exhibited in Shanghai, Hong Kong, London, Miami, San Francisco, and San Antonio.

Atlas: Harmony in Diversity will run from 20 April to 24 November at the Arsenale in Venice.