'A Thousand Plateaus' depicts a mountainous forest pierced by several ‘nail houses’: a term borrowed from the Chinese proverb: “the nail that sticks up will be hammered down,” used in China to refer to properties whose residents defy state-sanctioned developers’ demands to sell. Those who resist remain in their homes whilst their surrounding neighbourhood is destroyed a contemporary landscape springs up in its place. Cheung’s employment of nail houses, now censored symbols of resistance, unravels the conceptual framework of the traditional Chinese landscape painting, intended to induce a psychic state of dream travel, but also related to the omnipresence of dynastic civilisation. The painting’s title makes reference to the critique of contemporary capitalist culture by Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari of the same name.
Gordon Cheung: Here be Dragons, Nottingham Castle, Museum & Art Gallery, UK
30 April – 17 July 2016
Gordon Cheung: Here be Dragons, Nottingham Castle, Museum & Art Gallery, UK, texts by Tristram Aver and John-Paul Stonard
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