Zeng Fanzhi Exhibited at The Saatchi Gallery

Zeng Fanzhi


Oil on Canvas

215 x 330 cm
Overlaying the image of Beijing’s infamous landmark with an iconic portrait of Mao, Zeng’s Tiananmen directly confronts China’s tenuous relationship with its recent history. Using bright bold colours, Zeng’s painting resolves as a discomforting composite of irony and optimism, fusing the veneration of revolutionary heroicism with the uncertainty of a rapidly developing future. The surface of Zeng’s painting is brought to life with a frenzied network of brush marks, replicating the inarticulate calligraphy of muffled sentiment, or the galvanisation of repressed anxiety. The figure of Mao dominates the scene, a lingering ghost presiding over popular consciousness.
Zeng Fanzhi
This Land Is So Rich In Beauty 2


Oil on canvas

215 x 330 cm
Zeng Fanzhi’s paintings are immediately recognisable by their signature expressionistic style, an effect that lends provocative sensations of underlying violence, psychological tension, or supernatural aura to his lavishly rendered canvases.

With subjects ranging from portraits and rural landscapes to politically charged motifs, Zeng infuses the everyday veneer of shared experience with an ambience of transgression, reflective of both the rapidly changing terrain of contemporary Chinese culture and the negotiation of personal identity within this societal flux.

Zeng’s magnificent landscapes express the vast conceptual gulf between individual cognition and the actuality of environment. Painting with two brushes simultaneously, Zeng uses one to describe his subject, while the other meanders the canvas, leaving traces of his subconscious through processes. Through this combination of painterly realism and ’automatic’ expression, Zeng’s landscapes are transformed into near abstract fields; the depicted people and places merging both memory and imagination.
Zeng Fanzhi
Little Boy


Oil on canvas

180 x 280 cm
Zeng Fanzhi
Huang Jiguang


Oil on canvas

215 x 330 cm
Zeng Fanzhi
Hospital Series


Oil on canvas

179.1 x 199.4 cm
Zeng’s Hospital Series is of his earliest work, and exemplifies his correlative approach between painting and psychology. His A&E waiting room is portrayed with overwhelming banality and trauma: muted tones replicate the staleness of public space, the milling crowds in the background appear hazy and remote, while rusty washes pour over the canvas replicating blood, sorrowful and repugnant. Sat centre stage are a distraught patient and cavalier doctor, juxtaposed as human anguish and the white-coated horror of bureaucracy. Their heads and hands are aggrandised to painful and clumsy scale in grotesque parody of thought and action.
Zeng Fanzhi
We n:2


Oil on canvas

250 x 250 cm
We n:2 operates simultaneously as portrait and abstraction. The extreme close up of a face is uncomfortably large, its beatific features becoming imposing and oppressive. Zeng obliterates this image with a mesh of ringlet patterns. Scribbled out, barred by a defective ’screen’, the effect is continuous and mesmerising, describing an impossibility of intimate articulation and knowledge, a jumbled poetry in their imperative gesture. As Zeng’s brush marks trace through the figure, colours are dragged and repositioned, creating a ghost image, echoing multiplicity and technological distortion.

Other artists in

Zhang Dali    Zeng Fanzhi    Wang Guangyi    Zheng Guogu    Zhang Haiying    Zhang Hongtu    Zhang Huan    Qiu Jie    Xiang Jing    Shi Jinsong    Fang Lijun    Yue Minjun    Li Qing    Wu Shanzhuan    Shen Shaomin    Li Songsong    Zhan Wang    Liu Wei    Zhang Xiaogang    Zhang Xiaotao    Cang Xin    Shi Xinning    Li Yan    Bai Yiluo    Zhang Yuan    Sun Yuan & Peng Yu    Yin Zhaohui    Feng Zhengjie

Zeng Fanzhi's Biography

Zeng Fanzhi
Born in 1964, Wuhan, China
Lives and works in Beijing


Zeng Fanzhi:The Sublime, Union Temple
Zeng Fanzhi, Shanghai Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai
Zeng Fanzhi, The National Gallery of Foreign Art, Sofia, Bulgaria

Zeng Fanzhi, Godia Fundation, Barcelona, Spain
Art Beijing 2009--Zeng Fanzhi, Art Fairs Agricultural Exhibition Centre of China, Beijing
Narcissus looks for Echo, Zeng Fanzhi Suzhou Exhibition, Suzhou Museum, Jiangsu Province
Zeng Fanzhi, Acquavella Gallery, New York

Tai Ping You Xiang-Zeng Fanzhi solo exhibition, ShanghART Beijing

Zeng Fanzhi, Musee d'art Moderne Saint-Etienne Metropole, France
Zeng Fanzhi Idealism, National Art Museum, Singapore
Zeng Fanzhi 1989-2007, Gallery Hyondai, Seoul, Korea

Zeng Fanzhi - Paintings, ShanghART H-Space, Shanghai
Hero, Zeng Fanzhi solo exhibition, Art Basel Miami 06, Miami, USA
Zeng Fanzhi, Gallery Wedel, London, UK

Sky, Fine Art Literature, Wuhan
Paintings by Zeng Fanzhi, Hanart T Z Gallery, Hong Kong

Unmask the Mask - Zeng Fanzhi, Artside Gallery, Korea
Face, Soobin Gallery, Singapore
Scapes 1989-2004, the paintings of Zeng Fanzhi, He Xiangning Art Museum, Shenzhen

I/We, 1991-2003, The Painting of Zeng Fanzhi, Shanghai Art Museum, Shanghai

Raw Beneath the Mask, ShanghART Gallery, Shanghai

Zeng Fanzhi: The Mask Series, ShanghART Gallery, Shanghai
Zeng Fanzhi Works 1993-1998, CIFA (Central Academy of Fine Arts) Gallery, Beijing

Behind the Mask, Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kon

Zeng Fanzhi, Hubei Institute of Fine Arts Gallery, Wuhan


The World Belongs to You, Palalazzo Grassi, Italy
Fusion. Contemporary Art Exhibition, Yiyuan Space, Wuhan

Made in popland, National Museum of Contemporary art
And-Writers 2010 - Nan Jing Biennale, Jiangsu Provingcial Art Museum, Nangjing
2010 The Constructed Dimension, 2010 Chinese Contemporary Art Invitational Exhibition, National Art Musume of China, Beijing
Reshaping History: Chinart from 2000-2009, Special Documenta, China National Convention Center, Beijing
Thirty Years of Chinese Contemporary Art, Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai
Fairy Tales Selections from the MaGMA's collection, Opera Gallery, Singapore
Photo Exhibition of Contemporary Artists, Today Art Museum, Beijing

Normality, 2009 Art Works Show, New Space of Fine Arts Literature Art Center
First Annual Conference of Collectors of Chinese Contemporary Art, Hejingyuan Art Museum, Beijing
Retrospect and Exploration, Hu Bei Province Art Museum
Another scene - artists' projects, concepts and ideas, ShanghART H-Space, Shanghai
Mahjong: Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg Collection, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass, U.S.A.
China Gold, Museum Maillol, Paris, France
53rd Venice Biennial, Making World, La Biennale, Venice, Italy
Boao Asia Contemoprary Art Exhibition – Contemplation and Communication, Boao Asian Forum International Meeting Center, Hainan
Contemporary Art from Hunan & Hubei 1985 – 2009, Guangdong Art Museum, Guangdong

Lovely Blossoms and Full moon, YUZ Collection of Chinese Contemporary Art, YUZ Museum, Darmawangsa Square unit 31-33, The City Walk, JI. Darmawangsa VI&IX, Jakarta
FIAC 2008, Booth B12, Art Fairs Grand Palais, Paris
The Love of Art: Collection of Contemporary Art in China, Today Art Museum, Beijing
The Revolution Continues, New Art From China, The Saatchi Gallery
Our Future, The Guy & Myriam Ullens Foundation Collection, Ullens Foundation, Beijing
Case Studies of Artists in Art History and Art Criticism, SZ Art Center, Beijing
Crouching Paper, Hidden Dragon, Works on Paper, F2 Gallery, Beijing
Writing on the Wall, Chinese New Realism and Avant-Garde in the Eighties and nineties, The Groninger Museum, Groningen, The Netherlands
21st Century China. Art between Identity and Transformation, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Roma, Italy
Selected, ShanghART H-Space, Shanghai
Academic and Un-Academic II, Exhibition of Yibo Gallery, Shanghai

China's Neo Painting-A Triumph Over Images, Shanghai Art Museum, Shanghai
Beyond Icons: Chinese Contemporary Art in Miami, Miami Design District, Miami, U.S.A.
Wuhan 2nd Documentary Exhibition of Fine Arts, Hubei Museum of Art, Wuhan
Thermocline of Art, New Asian Waves, ZKM (Center for Art and Media), Karlsruhe, Germany
Individual Positions 1, ShanghART Gallery, Shanghai
Time Difference, Initial Access, Wolverhampton, UK

Art in Motion, MoCA, Shanghai
Mahjong: Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg Collection, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany
Jianghu, Jack Tilton Art Galleries, New York, USA
Contemporary China, PKM Gallery, Seoul, Korea

Mahjong, Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg Collection, Kunstmuseum Bern, Bern, Switzerland
Zhou Chunya, Zeng Fanzhi & Ji Dachun, Beijing
China, Contemporary Painting, Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio, Bologna, Italy

New Boundaries, Taikang Top Space, Beijing
The 1st Wu Han Nominative Exhibition of Fine Arts Literature, Art Gallery of Hubei Institute of Fine Arts
Face to Face, Six Artists and One Era, Robert & Li Art Gallery, Taiwan
Exhibition of Nominates for Art Documentation, Art Gallery of Hubei Academy of Art, Wuhan

Contemporary Arts, 798 Space, Beijing
Invitational Gallery Exhibition, Shanghai Art Museum, Shanghai
Left Hand, Right Hand -, A Sino-German Exhibition of Contemporary Art, Beijing 798 Space Art & Culture, Beijing

The First Guangzhou Trienniale - Reinterpretation: A Decade of Experimental Chinese Art (1990 - 2000), Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou
Korean and Chinese painting - 2002 New Expression, Seoul Arts Center, Korea
Paris-Pekin, Chinese Contemporary Art Exhibition, Espace Pierre Cardin, Paris, France

Towards a New Image, Twenty Years of Chinese Contemporary Painting,, The National Art Museum of China, Beijing; Shanghai Art Museum, Shanghai; Guangdong Art Museum, Guangzhou; Sichuan Modern Art Museum, Chengdu
Chinese Muren Chinese Walls, Groningen, Netherlands
Futuro Chinese Contemporary Art, Contemporary Art Centre, Macau

Chinese Oil Painting for Fifty years, International Exhibition Center, Beijing
Open Channels, The First Collecting Exhibition of Dong Yu Museum of Fine Arts, Dong Yu Museum, Shenyang

Chinese Contemporary Art, Nikolaus Sonne Fine Arts, Berlin
It Is Me, Forbidden City, Beijing

Quotation Marks, Chinese Contemporary Paintings, National Art Museum, Singapore

The First Academic Exhibition of Chinese Art, China Art Gallery, Beijing: Hong Kong Arts Centre, Hong Kong
Reality: Present& Future— '96 Chinese Contemporary Art, International Art Palace, Beijing
China!, Touring Exhibition, Kunstmuseum Bonn, Germany
Existence and Environment the Chinese Way:The first Academic Exhibition of Chinese Contenporary Art, The Art Museum of Capital Normal University, Beijing
Beyond Ideology: New Art from China, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Hamburg, Germany
Out of the Middle Kingdom:, Chinese Avant-Garde Art, Santa Monica Arts Centre, Barcelona, Spain

New Art from China, Marlborough Fine Arts, London, UK
Chinese Oil Painting Exhibition, Fung Ping Shan Museum, Hong Kong University, Hong Kong
Exhibition of Works Selected By Art Critics, China Art Gallery, Beijng

New Art From China, Marlborough Fine Arts, London, UK
China's New Art, Post-1989, Hong Kong Arts Centre and City Hall, Hong Kong

Guangzhou Biennial-Oil Painting of the Nineties, Convention Centre, Guangzhou