A Painting of Thought I-542 | 很有想法的绘画 I-542

A Painting of Thought I-542 is a work that is composed of three paintings. As a further step in the development of A Painting of Thought, brand-new texture and pattern are added into color blocks of high-purity acrylic, which triggers reactions to “the marbled” as a collective aestheticism on different cultural and cognitive levels. The reactions are then taken into the work as a part of the experience. The mass-produced, ready-made fabric and patterns in the same batch but in different colors are used repeatedly in the work, which demonstrates the “systematization” in industrial products that is transformed into an aesthetic move. The pattern of “thinking puzzle” duplicates itself for multiple times on the fabric and is applied to the fabric in the same way. The “undifferentiated” aestheticism presented by the “systematization” of mass production is carried into the experience of the work. The halo of the thick acrylic colors imitates the gloss of the highlight of children’s plastic toys, through which process the gloss of plastic products in the everyday experience of contemporary society is put into the painting and is transcended. A Painting of Thought is both serious and playful.
A Painting of Thought I-542
Each 180 x 200 x 8 cm, 4 paintings in total
Material: Acrylic on found fabric
《很有想法的绘画 I-542》是一件由三张绘画组成的作品。作为“很有想法的绘画”创作的进一步发展,在高纯度的丙烯色块里面,加入了全新的肌理纹样,以此触发”大理石纹”作为一种集体审美意识在不同文化和认知层面反应,并带入作品成为体验的一部分。通过工业化批量生产出来的这组现成布料,同一批次不同颜色的图样在这件作品里面被同时使用。把工业制品共有的那种“系列感”转化成一种审美化的动作展示出来。“思维游戏”的图案在织物上自我多次叠加,并以同一方式应用在这批织物上。将“系列化”生产呈现出来的一种“无差别”的审美方式带进作品的体验中。丙烯颜料厚厚堆积起来的光滑表面产生出的光晕,效仿了儿童塑料玩具高光部分散发出的那种光泽。通过这个过程把当代社会日常经验里到处闪烁着的这种塑料光晕带入画面并使其升华。“很有想法的绘画”既是严肃的又是游戏的。
很有想法的绘画 I-542
每张180x200x8 cm 共4张


简介: 全球青年文化之声 | www.vice.cn | 微博@VICE中国 |艺术家赵要完成了一件面积将近10000平方米的装置作品,从北京工厂运往青海玉树的摩耶寺。11月23日,当地100多名村民和喇嘛出动,经历一整天,共同把这个庞然大物抬到海拔5000米的雪山山顶,铺展开来。实施当天,我们和艺术家与作品一起坐在在大卡车里穿过长长的峡谷,来到雪山脚下,纪录下了这个作品的向山顶的搬运过程。


©️ 异视异色(北京)文化传播有限公司

Cosmos Black is Spinning Around

Cosmos Black is Spinning Around | 宇宙在黑在旋

metallic paint, aluminum, dual-axis solar tracker, metal stand
尺寸可变 | size variable

A piece of the “Cosmo Black” square was placed on top of the automatic dual-axis solar tracker. From now on it will look to the dome of the blue sky above, always following the movement of the sun. Cosmo black is Mercedes car standard color 191.



《很有想法的雕塑》2016/A Sculpture of Thought

A Beautiful Disorder/Jul 3rd – Nov 6th
与《很有想法的绘画》一样从立体形态的角度思考一些艺术的本质问题。雕塑造型同样选自游戏书里面的一个现成图形。这里一切都是现成的——现成的图像,现成的颜色,现成的结构。各种可见的视觉元素和不可见的抽象思维作为创作的基本要素,融汇在一起。通过调动理性经验,材料质感,视觉认知等身体与思想全部的感知方式,形成一种对意义追求的瞬间获得感。 利用儿童滑梯的PVC塑料,把这个图形放大制作成6米高的立体的雕塑置现实的社会环境里面。作品采用模块组合方式组装,把真正儿童玩具的塑料光泽赋予作品,成为作品神圣的光晕。同时以一种轻松又严肃的方式呼应日常生活经验中塑料制品上处处闪烁的这种时代性高光。通过调动艺术经验审美的方式升华游戏的崇高感,而游戏又以一种世俗的直接的感官和趣味的逻辑性对经验的审美认知进行重新审视。
Similar to the A Painting of Thought series, the work contemplates issues essential to art from a three-dimensional perspective. Therefore A Sculpture of Thought and A Painting of Thought have a parallel relationship. The form of the sculpture also adopts directly from brain-teaser puzzles, everything is ready – images, colours, structure. All kinds of apparent visual elements combined with hidden abstract concepts are of essence to the creation of this piece. Through the manoeuvring of rational experience, texture of the material, visual recognition and all aspects of physical + mental sensations, the work forms a sudden satisfaction in pursuit of meaning. The material PVC plastic is widely used in the manufacturing of children’s slides, and the form of the sculpture is blown to 6 meters tall and placed in the reality of our social environment. The installation method also mimics construction toys, further lightens the sculpture with the plastic shine that’s apparent on actual children’s toys – a divine aura of the sculpture. A playful yet serious way of responding to the daily experience of plastic goods and their sparkles as the highlight of their times. The methods of evaluating / appreciating art elevates the position of gaming, yet at the same time the mundaneness and straightforwardness of gaming from both sensual and logical perspectives re-evaluates our aesthetic habits.
A Sculpture of Thought I-192
Materials: aluminum alloy/铝合金、塑料
plasticSize: 407x116x583cm



2015.01.15 – 02.26 | PACE HONG KONG

Written by Zhao Yao


Painting of Thought is a very apt and fitting title for these works. The two books that provided the source images for these paintings say the following on their covers:


  1. A magical book full of challenging wisdom, geniuses around the world are playing 1000 Thinking Games. Why are Japanese people so smart? An American had a sudden realization that thinking is built through play. (A must read for the never-surrendering Chinese. Nanhai Press, 2005.)


  1. Top international thinking games to rapidly unlock your mind’s potential. The 600 thinking games played by all the top students in the world will help you grasp effective methods for enhancing cognitive abilities, heightening powers of observation, analysis, logic, deduction, judgment, imagination, creativity, memory, thinking and action. The more you play, the smarter and more successful you will become. (600 Thinking Games from a century of Harvard students. Huawen Press, 2009.)


From the first painting, Painting of Thought has a sense of mission. How do we look at a painting? How do we understand a painting? How do we create a painting? This series approaches fundamental questions of art from the perspective of painting, particularly abstract painting. Unlike conceptual art in the general sense, this series is not expressing certain criticisms or concepts but instead practicing criticisms or concepts. First, everything here is readymade. Readymade images, readymade colors, readymade fabric, and a readymade understanding of painting. Furthermore, these readymade understandings and concepts of painting are produced by these readymade images, forms and materials. This also includes the understanding and ways of thinking about painting produced by existing art history education and artistic experience. The various visible visual elements and invisible abstract thoughts serve as the fundamental elements of creation, just like the colors and brushstrokes of painting, and they are combined together according to an internal logic and order.

Painting of Thought, being constructed atop a purely logical foundation, is both serious and playful. The removal of the playful aspects of the images, and the use of stacked layers of acrylic to build up an aura out of the glossy sheen, are not intended to produce that sacred aura of traditional painting but instead to imitate the radiant sheen of plastic children’s toys. The artist is playing with the sacred aura not to make the profound superficial but instead to use this process to bring the sparkling sheen of plastic, which permeates the everyday experience of contemporary society, into the painting and to elevate it. This, together with thickness and sheen, are integrated and materialized by a purely abstract logic. The aura that busts forth from this is the aura of ideals and abstraction. Meanwhile, this materialized aura is also a form of resistance and balancing against the criticality created by pure reason and abstract logic. These works use this resistance and balancing to transcend painting and criticism, and to return to a more metaphysical level to discuss and practice more fundamental issues regarding art and culture. The relationship that emerges here between criticism and resistance is the dialectic relationship between form and content.

Created using a method akin to a television series, Painting of Thought is a forerunner to the 2013 exhibition Spirit Above All. It marks my earliest creative practice to explore the dialectic relationship between form and content. Painting of Thought is sometimes treated as a series of abstract installations inserted into the system of painting. Just as my other series are constantly created and enriched, this series applies a reverse logic to constantly expand and enrich their meaning and content as it grows continuously.







《很有想法的繪畫》從第一張開始就是帶著使命而來的。如何看待一張繪畫,如何理解一張繪畫,如何創作一張繪畫。以繪畫特別是抽象畫的角度思考一些藝術的本質問題。它與一般意義上的觀念創作不同,它不只是表述一種批判或者觀念,而是去實踐一種批判或者觀念。首先在這裡一切都是現成的——現成的圖像,現成的顏色,現成的織布,以及現成的對繪畫認識的理解觀念 &更進一步說,這些現成的繪畫認識和理解觀念就是從這些現成的圖像、形式和材料裡面產生出來的。同時還包含了在現有藝術史教育和藝術經驗下產生的對繪畫對藝術的理解和思考方式。各種可見的視覺元素和不可見的抽象思維作為創作的基本要素,就像繪畫裡面的顏色和筆觸一樣,然後按照一定的內在邏輯和秩序集成在一起。





The Armory Show /纽约军械库艺术博览会 2014

 Private View: Wednesday, 5 March 2014, 2pm to 5pm (by invitation only)
Vernissage: Wednesday, 5 March 2014, 5pm to 8pm (by invitation only)
Public Days: 6-9 March 2014

Zhao Yao’s diverse practice incorporates installation,painting, video, photography, and other media. With a conceptual rigor, wry wit, and critical imperative uncommon for an artist his age, Zhao’s artwork reects on and deconstructs modalities of production and dissemination within contemporary art.

For Armory Focus: China, Beijing Commune will present a set of new works from Zhao’s series “A Painting of Thought”along with a new installation piece The Form of the Ten Thousand Things . “A Painting of Thought” appropriates the visual language of brainteasers to form quasi-modernist painting installations on found fabric. A more direct translation of the series’s title is “Very Clever Painting,”hinting that the artist is not merely interested in the abstract aesthetics of mental puzzles, but also in the individual and cultural constructions of meaning, by both artist and viewer, that mediate the experience of art. The tongue-in-cheek name of the series may refer to the tendency among audiences to “decode” and reduce artworks into packaged, easily digestible messages.

Zhao’s new installation piece The Form of the Ten Thousand Things inspires its title from renowned East Asian art historian Lothar Ledderose’s book Ten Thousand Things. The book describes modular systems of cultural production in ancient China, that is, the production of objects and cultural systems out of standardized parts. For his piece, Zhao takes as his medium die-cutting molds used in printing. The artist is interested in the metaphorical implications of these molds, which embody a peculiar conceptual duality of form and formlessness, abstract concept and physical product.The plating of the metal and imitation monumental appearance of the work imply a sense of reverence, though not without skepticism.

北京公社诚邀您莅临我们在2014军械库艺术博览会 “军械库焦点:中国” 单元的548展位。此次军械库艺术博览会,我们为大家呈现艺术家赵要的最新作品。  赵要的创作涵盖了装置、绘画、录像及摄影等多种媒介,富于观念的思辨性。赵要有着丰富的视觉及信息储备,他对于这些知识的判断和处理能力部分体现为其自觉性反思。在一个包罗万象、信息迅速传递和冲撞的世界当代艺术的环境中,赵要的作品用充满机智和幽默感的方式对艺术的展示及创作机制展开了一场内省的、反思的实践。在此次的“军械库焦点:中国” 单元中,北京公社将呈现赵要《很有想法的绘画》系列作品的新作及由此延展出来的新的装置作品《万物有形》。《很有想法的绘画》系列作品表现赵要对于观众在艺术的形式、美感经验、观念与认知的探索。艺术家给作品提供一定的线索,同时又不直接表态,为这个对话带来一个开放的平台。在这系列的绘画中,赵要以带有几何花纹的现成纺织布料作为画布,撷取智力训练书籍中的图案为画面内容,以这种是似而非的“抽象”的形式试探和挑衅着观众的视觉经验并以此引发观众对自身审美认识形成过程的反思。他用强烈的画面吸引观众,希望借由形成画面的元素(各种不同目的和功能的现成图案)诱导观众到达绘画形式背后的观念。



Great Performance/伟大的表演

The 2ndCAFAM Biennale/第二届CAFAM双年展
Performance, installation

This work is derived from the two media images above. The images are photographed again with the built-in kaleidoscope special effects filter of the Apple iPad camera software, and the new distorted image is printed onto synthetic leather. Elements of revelry, riot, rally, and game convene and constitute this piece. A myriad of relationships involving form and content, image and narrative, as well as image and meaning are present within this performance. By liberating an image from a discourse and reinserting it back into discourse, the multiplicity of visual culture within contemporary society is discussed. “Great Performance” is another focused attempt on the relationship between form and content where content interferes with form and form is used to reflect upon content. Great performances are therefore not a specified narrative response, but rather a humanistic practice with form and content.



In Guangzhou, a group of nearly three thousand citizens, including those born after the 1980’s, gathered outside Jiangnanxilu subway station and shouted the slogan “We support Guangzhou, we support Cantonese” to protest against Mandarin Chinese replacing Cantonese Chinese on Guangdong television stations. A large number of the police force was dispatched to break up the crowd. Reported by Qiao Long of Radio Free Asia (RFA)


Protesters react after an explosion on a barricade during clashes in Istanbul’s Taksim square June 11, 2013.
Photo: Yannis Behrakis/ Reuters



“Archipelago”,group exhibition /群岛

15 September – 6 October 2013

V-Art Center and Art-Ba-Ba Mobile Space is proud to announce “Archipelago”, an group exhibition academic guidanced by Liu Xinghua consisting of six individual artists; He An, Zhao Yao, Ding Li, Zhang Jiebai,Lu Pingyuan and Liao Guohe presenting their newest works at V-Art Center. Archipelago is by definition a cluster or collection of islands. Based partially in Beijing and Shanghai they have come together as a set of islands forming an archipelago for the audience to explore. “Archipelago” is a condition a state of mind, together they share the same values acting as a dispersed force. As with today’s society, where we emphasize individality, separating, sometimes even isolating, ourselves from the idea as an collective. What “Archipelago” is about is that although in the midst of today’s society where an individual may seem as an isolated islands, we’re actually a part of something larger. If we’re willing to step outside our own islands, there’s more to discover in our near surroundings. In a lot of senses we need to take our environment into account. Therefore “Archipelago” is not a theme, there’s no hidden agenda but rather a condition of these five artist’s at the same time refecting today’s society.

视界艺术中心即将推出由 ART-BA-BA流动空间 策划,陆兴华 为学术指导的当代艺术展——“群岛”。 “群岛”由 何岸,丁力,廖国核,陆平原,赵要,张洁白六位活跃的艺术家最新的作品组成。他们分别用绘画,装置,表演等各自熟悉的媒介展现最新的探索。“群岛”是一种群集的岛屿类型,也是一种观看视角。这六位各自不同的艺术家因为“群岛”这个展览汇聚。这正像今天的社会一样,我们的创作有时候像是处在岛屿之中,岛屿有着独立的生态系统,但岛屿之间又相互关联并构成一个更大的生态。其中强调着个人的追求,也无法忽视外部的环境和共同要面对的局面。因此,“群岛”既是一次观看的探险,也是一种展示的姿态。


A Painting of Thought I - 171

A Painting of Thought I -171
acrylic on found fabric
148 x 130 cm

A Painting of Thought series/很有想法的绘画

2011 – ongoing

This series of paintings is about the practice of painting. Flat geometric shapes are painted onto found fabric; its absolute and contrasting colors allow one to associate the painting with typical abstractions. These paintings are not derived from any set of aesthetics nor are they explorations of certain ideology. Instead, they serve as a disruption to this form of understanding. The graphics that seem to have some sort of meaning are borrowed from logic or math challenge diagrams in puzzle books. Only colors are added to the graphics to produce paintings that circulates into the system of paintings.



Details »

Warning: split(): REG_EMPTY in /home/dtiyvczf/public_html/wp-content/themes/tanzaku/functions.php on line 69

Zhao Yao:Spirit Above All/精神高于一切

Feb 12, 2013 – Mar 16, 2013

6-10 Lexington Street, London, W1F 0LB

12 February – 16 March 2013

Opening: Monday, 11 February 2013, 6 – 8 p.m.

Pace London is pleased to present Spirit Above All, the first solo exhibition in the UK by the conceptual Chinese artist Zhao Yao. Spirit Above All will be on view at 6-10 Lexington Street from 12 February to 16 March 2013. The exhibition is a collaborative project between Pace London and Beijing Commune. Spirit Above All features seven new works created by Zhao Yao in 2012 and marks the first time that he has contextualised his paintings with photographic backdrops in a gallery. The exhibition features abstract geometric compositions painted in black, white, and grey on pieces of denim, a material that is recognised for its durability. Once completed, the artist brought the artworks to Tibet to be blessed by a “Living Buddha”, a reincarnation of a previous Buddha according to the Buddhist religious doctrine. Zhao Yao documented this process through photographs of the Tibetan landscape, which not only provide backdrops in the gallery but will also be presented in albums for visitors to look at while seated on the straw mats that form part of the installation.

Details »

Warning: split(): REG_EMPTY in /home/dtiyvczf/public_html/wp-content/themes/tanzaku/functions.php on line 69

Zhao Yao: You Can’t See Me, You Can’t See Me /赵要:你看不见我,你看不见我

June 12 – August 20, 2012 | Beijing Commune, Beijing, China

“You Can’t See Me, You Can’t See Me” is a continuation of Zhao Yao’s solo exhibition from 2011, which opened on the same day in the same month this year. The paintings and installations showcased are reflections of time and space through a déjà-vu-esque approach re-examining the validity and meaning of an exhibition. This show features reproductions, enlargements, and scaled-down versions of works from the previous year. In addition, few pieces from the prior show are borrowed back from collectors to be included in the 2012 show. Zhao deliberately intertwines the relationship and roles of artists, viewers, gallerist, and collectors by presenting these works
together in this show.


Details »


I Love Beijing 999/我爱北京 999

November 2008 – December 2009Single channel video

“This is a long-term project full of fun. Starting from the winter of 2008, I went out almost everyday when the sun was out. What I did is to ride in a bus for its whole trip and take snapshots of the sun, placing it right in the center of the frame. After taking hundreds of sun pictures, I displayed them in the speed of 9 frames per second. What you see is me passively chasing the sun. The sun that’s always in the center of the image echoed with the capital city—the sun in Chinese people’s mind. The whole project was completed in November 2009, by then I had gone through nine-hundred and ninety-nine bus lines in Beijing.”




Warning: split(): REG_EMPTY in /home/dtiyvczf/public_html/wp-content/themes/tanzaku/functions.php on line 69

Zhao Yao: I am Your Night赵要:我是你的黑夜

June 12 – August 20, 2011 | Beijing Commune, Beijing, China

Beijing Commune is pleased to announce the opening of Zhao Yao’s solo exhibition “I Am Your Night” on June 12, 2011. The show will last until July 31, 2011. The first solo exhibition of Zhao Yao at Beijing Commune, the artist is showing a series of installations and paintings lately produced.

This exhibition differentiates itself from today’s common idea about the exhibition system. Taking the viewers response as a part of his strategy, the artist explores into the forming and communicating of a concept in a seemingly ridiculous way. It can be regarded as a question or the starter of a discussion: in an exhibition system composed of a series of established concepts, does “interpretation” serve, in fact, as an access to the information or the barrier? Details »


Ten Thousand Times/一万次

Medium: Video | Singlechannel

Time: 6 minutes 56 seconds



For 14 hours, the hand-held camera, kept in a fixed position, tries to focus on the letter “+” composed of four rice grains,continuously shooting 10000 photos, which are played in order with a speed of 24 frames per second. In this video, we can find each small error and displacement among the photos that are seemingly the same. The errors derive from the subtle changes occured in the repetitive action.





51㎡:3# 赵要

2009.12.12 – 2009.12.26