Artist / Combines elements of pop culture, religious symbolism, sacred rituals and self-deprecation
Lives in Beijing and Shanghai
19:53, 2015 / G.H.O.S.T., 2017 / Ishvara, 2016 / PARADI$E BITCH, 2014
In Tianzhuo Chen’s work, frenetic, futuristic, anime, spiritualistic, and video game signifiers of (contemporary) Asia meet in a mash-up of operatic volume and scope. The DJ music in the background, created by his collective Asian Dope Boys, with its rudimentary techno sound, could be the soundtrack of an alternative video game or Gabber party. Tianzhuo Chen’s main protagonist appears like a character out of a video game like Street Fighter or Ghost in the Shell, like a Nintendo-Dionysus, half-naked, half-covered in ornamental garments of sci-fi paraphernalia. Accompanying him in his performances and videos are other half-human, demon, cyborg, and queer characters. Like hallucinogenic figures of Tibetan Buddhism, they fill the exhibition space, turning it into a demonic night-club in which sensuality is visually striking, although it remains difficult to decipher whether the observed belongs to fetish, performance, fashion, or dance genres.