Art is sexy – Wang Xin

Wang Xin - We Love Art as We Love Bubble Bath, 2013

Wang Xin is a young Chinese contemporary artist. Her body of works mainly consists of installations, moving images and new media. Unconsciousness, the art world and system, and post-human are keywords in Xin’s art creations.

Deeply intrigued by the human mind as well as hypnosis practices, Xin observes and explores the possibilities of human actions and gestures in an ongoing creative process that has not come to an end. Playful, yet inquisitive, Wang Xin attempts to extract the essence of human behaviour, be it reduced to the child state, or brought up to sexual tensions, her artistic research revolves around the unexplored psychic dimensions of the human mind.

WoMA: In most of your works, rose seems to be the principal and dominant colour. Which are the aspects of this tonality that interest you? Which are the reasons behind this chromatic choice?

My artworks in rose are all about the art world and system. I have began to be interested in the art world after myself as an artist interacted with this system for a couple of years. My first artwork in rose is “The Gallery”, in which I created an alternative art space which also served for an artist project. The main reason I choose rose as the main colour is because I somehow feel that the art world is charming and art is sexy. But my other artworks are not in rose; I only use this specific colour to intentionally mark my artworks that specifically relate to the art world and system.

WoMA: Your artworks involve different medias and techniques. Although physically tangible or at least perceivable, they entail a significant degree of abstraction. Ranging from installations, to moving images and finally to e-poetry, your artistic focus seems centred on the aspects of elusiveness and expropriation, as if art cannot be possessed. Which are the motivations behind your creative choices?

I think the motivations behind these choices have many different layers. Art, creativity, the choice of technologies and how I express my art have so many deep connections with my mind and other spiritual things. Some motivations I can tell, or perhaps I think I can tell, but the motivation I’m able to tell may come from another motivation which I may not be able to tell or did not even notice, I mean from my unconsciousness.

WoMA: From your portfolio of artworks, there seems to be an intense and curious relationship with technology. For instance, in Asterism, you’ve made use of projectors and screens to research on the behaviour of humans, highlighting the spontaneity of gestures and attitudes. Yet, you have given instructions to the video protagonists, almost orchestrating the scene according to your personal reactions. What is the “aura” you look for in people? What are the aspects of human behaviour that most intrigue you?

The “Aura” I was looking for is perhaps the moment in which people are in a state of being completely by and with themselves, simply turning on their natural play mode and being totally immersed in that present time. It’s in the play process that their unconsciousness truly begins to awake, reveal and express itself through the act of playing and their spontaneous behaviours. I feel that in that exact moment their “aura” is being revealed. And only this kind of moments truly intrigue me.

WoMA: Via technology and the research on human behaviour, you seem to investigate on the relationship between the animate and inanimate, the interaction between men and technology, that is the role of social media in the arts world and today’s society. In your opinion, in what ways are social media platforms being abused? Which have been the results of your research studies?

I am not very sure what being “abused” really means; there may be various perspectives to measure whether it is being abused. For me brain-wash-style information on the social medias is “abuse”. Talking about results, it is hard to say, I think I still haven’t reached the final result stage.

Wang Xin - The Gallery

WoMA: In “We Love Art as We Love bubble Bath”, an attractive girl acts like a maid, offering the audience an intimate bath and a huge sense of comfort that almost seems appealing and captivating in a sexual way. Is there a sense of unexpressed sexuality? What did you want to achieve through this piece?

In this work there is another part, which consists of the spectator sitting in the bath with the maid also giving him or her a microphone to put on. A recording plays an audio-reading of an art review. So the spectator listens to that voice reading the article, and at the same time enjoys the girl servicing him. I personally feel there is an ambiguous, or even promiscuous attitude in the art world that combines the projected emotions and desires from artists, curators, gallery owners etc.

WoMA: “The Gallery” is an artistic project that bears your signature and represents a physical and conceptual alternative to the usual gallery spaces, in which you showcase the works of other artists. What motivates this strive for independence from institutional realities? Which are the criteria for the selection of the artists that you choose to exhibit?

I wanted to create a gallery system that is different from the usual gallery system. In this piece, the dynamics, how does it function and work, what are the intrinsic rules, how will it develop through time, and how does it interact with the artists and the real world were the research aspects that most interested me when I was making it. The Gallery does not really select the artists; if an artist’s work conforms to the local law, then The Gallery will show it. For artists whose works weren’t shown on time, they can move to the next round when The Gallery will be running again.

WoMA: You describe yourself as an hypnotist. How did your interest towards human sub-consciousness develop? Which have been the main findings of your artistic and social experiments? What’s next?

I only tend to describe myself as a hypnotist when I run my 8HZ Hypnosis Project, in all other cases I describe myself as an artist. I’ve gotten a hypnotist certification two years ago after I studied hypnosis for several months in a training course. I decided to learn this field because I’ve always been interested in the human mind and unconsciousness, it allows me to communicate with the unconscious more directly. I was already very interested in dreams when I was in art school, especially in lucid dreams. Sometimes I would have lucid dreams, and they would offer me the chance to explore other remote dimensions of the human mind. At the beginning I tried to learn hypnosis to induce my lucid dreaming. It works sometimes. After the hypnosis course, I had some new inspirations, which ultimately led me to make my 8HZ Hypnosis Project.

About main findings, I cannot really say right now, because I am still on my way of findings. About what’s next, well I’ll keep on exploring the virtual reality, as well as further developing some of my projects, and… you will see in the not far future, I guess.

Anni Wu, Anna Aglietta