Zhang Huan: My Temple
2015, Wood, Stone and Plastic
276 x 496 x 315 inches(700 x 1260 x 800 cm)
Krauthuegel, Salzburg, Austria
The Salzburg Foundation Presents
July 24 - Sep. 29, 2015
Zhang Huan: My Temple is on show in Art-project Krauthuegel 2015, a project of the Salzburg Foundation in collaboration with the St. Peter"s Abbey and the Foundation for Art and Culture.
"The temple was the remains of a sacred place where my ancestors worship their forefathers 400 hundred years ago" Zhang Huan says to his installation. His temple consists of historical components of a temple complex from the Ming Dynasty dating back to the 17th century. Through this the artist calls to mind a traditional culture of China. It creates a correlation network between art and history, history and nature, and rationality and spirituality. Zhang"s temple is charged with the history of many generations that the artist transfers into actuality:
"Each time I walk into My Temple, I am surrounded by great mental aura which is unsophisticated, silent and mysterious. It"s an illusion, an illusion arising from epiphany which has something to do with the imaginary past, present and future. It"s an illusion of happiness, love and death" (Zhang Huan).
In the middle of the entrance beam is a plastic bag, a familiar object of everyday consumer life, but a foreign object to this installation. The ancient material wood, that conveys stability, meets the material of the present (and future?) plastic. The bag can also be read as a symbol of transportation and movement, as a vacuum that needs to be filled. Zhang Huan incorporated it into his historic temple as "an illusion of the future and the expectation of a new life".