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Liu Ding

Page 1 | Biography

Notes on images

1 - Table, 2008
writing on the work:

This is a stainless steel table. At the left hand front corner of the table, a razor blade is stuck in a chewing gum on the table. On the table, there is a personal story carved on the tabletop with this razor blade. The story reads, "I have been living on my own for ten years now. Everyday, I get out of bed around noon. I leave my house at 1pm, Then I would spend the rest of the afternoon wandering around in the streets. I would always do one thing during this time. I would call my own phone number from a public telephone. No one is at home waiting for my call. I do that just for myself to see the number shown up in my phone when I go home late at night. I am so lonely."

We tend to become emotionally involved in subject matters that were invented 2009
writing on the work:

Let's suppose this is a beginning for discussion.

4 & 5
CCTV 2009
writing on the work:

Every time I pass by the new CCTV building, I was always truck by a sense of magic. This is an unusual building. Beijingers nickname it as a pair of underpants.
I like this twisted architecture. In a totalitarian state, oderliness is of extreme importance. The government that embodies the inventiveness of a society has tolerated such a distortion in its order. Yet the people who are used to orderliness find it difficult to accept.

Encountering Matisse Twice 2009
writing on the work:

In 1987, I saw this black and white print of Matisse's work, casual, inventive, peaceful, uninhibited.
I was enchanted. I was hoping to reach a world as carefree as his. All I could do was copying and copying his work.
In 2009, I saw this work again in color in an auction catalogue, with a very refinded frame, a famous and sophisticated owner, in a handsome house, with beautiful decorations and delicate flowers. Everything was so graceful and classic. Fame, politics, public recognition, and money has unified everything under one roof.

Omission 2009
writing on the work:

Omission is the beginning of history writing.

Being Dramatic in a Pure State 2009
writing on the work:

An objective narrative is a useful addition to effective expression.

Images above taken from exhibition -

April 18 – July 4, 2009, Galerie Urs Meile, Lucerne

I Wrote Down Some of My Thoughts presents a recent series of works by artist Liu Ding, which reveals yet another important aspect of the multiplicities of his practice. The artist has commenced on this artistic adventure since the beginning of 2008, when he started to hand-write his strings of thoughts on black and white photographs that he had taken of a beautiful landscape early on. These thoughts recorded his contemplations on the medium of photography and the relationship between our visual memory/experience and the reality it’s based on. Rather than drawing any conclusion on this subject matter, the artist made bare his unprocessed process of thinking, remaining truthful to the occasional struggles the artist was having with his own thoughts, deliciously raw and thought-provoking.

After that, the artist further explored this way of working by inscribing on a series of used furniture, which he turned into a room installation. In both groups of works, the objects he chose to write on, be it photography or furniture items, together with the process of writing became a courier for his deliberation. Often the texts were drawn from his own deliberation, about art itself, or concerning his perception of certain phenomena, experience and ideology. Although most of his writings use the first person in narration, we can always derive from his discussions issues that we can relate to or have experience of.

In this exhibition, the artist relies on a selection of very specific and precise examples for his story-telling: printed reproductions of artworks, crafts, an altered map, photographs and mostly ready-made items that the artist regrouped or edited. He wrote down his perceptions and insights gained through them on them. They communicate his re-considerations of his own perceptions or experiences and awareness of a more universal nature.

These “reconsiderations” imply a possibility for yet more “reconsiderations”. As the artist offers his “reconsiderations”, he also reminds us of the endless possibilities for re-perceptions of these perceptions. What these “re-perceptions” are about isn’t as important as the act of “re-perceiving” itself. It urges us to keep an active gaze, tirelessly re-examining the intellectual foundation that supports and positions us and what we call “experience”. Every piece of work in this exhibition is related to each other, situated within the coordinates of the artist’s system of thoughts.

Liu Ding


Web Links
Galerie Urs Meile, Beijing- Lucerne
L.A. Galerie Frankfurt
Marella Gallery, Milan, Beijing
Grace Li Gallery, Zurich
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