The artist Zhan Wang replicates the city of Beijing using a variety of mass-produced cookware and his own, hand-molded, stainless steel rock formations. The installation, called Urban Landscape: Beijing, simultaneously extends and significantly alters both the tradition of Marcel Duchamp and the general precepts of minimalist sculpture. His work also addresses current social concerns such as urbanization and globalization.
Urban Landscape: Beijing embodies Zhan's expansive worldview. In the context of his work, the artist discusses concerns that range from economics, theology, sociology, urban planning, and architecture to formal art issues, such as the use of found objects and the role of the grid. He encourages our contemplation of rapid modernization in China--and the negative effect it can have on life there--and shares our pleasure in the gleaming surfaces of his materials. Urban Landscape: Beijing evokes both the allure of modern urban culture and the consequences of urban renewal--it offers the sensuous pleasure of modernity and the sting of the price paid.