Artwork: Trees Whisper—Shining Alone
Artist: Dai Xianjing
Media: Giclee print
Price: RMB 13,000
Trees Whisper is Dai Xianjing’s first theme in her work, and she hopes to photograph the theme until the end of her life. The relationship between humans and nature will never vanish, they will coexist. Nature exists objectively in its own way, while the landscape exists in a subjective world and summons a link between seeing and being seen. The term the “Landscape” requires human involvement.
The “Landscape” is closely linked up with ideas of “beauty”. When I get involved in a landscape composed of trees, I ask myself questions: can this moment be eternal? What kind of relationship can be formed between timeless trees and snapping photographs? Is there any possibility for a meaningful, traditional and romantic expression on digital snapshots?
About the Artist
Dai Xianjing was born in 1988 and raised in Nanjing. She received a BFA from the Department of Film and Television Art in Communication University of Zhejiang and now lives and works in Beijing.
Working primarily with methods including images, text and documentary, Dai uses artistic practices as her method to explore the relationship with herself and the world, to explore the truth and the unknown.
Her works are obsessed with the female gender, urban culture, natural landscapes and relationship between the three. Her aesthetic is integrated complexity and contradiction hidden in the delicate and fusion, alienation and calmness in the intimacy, and poetics under the colour. In her works, she constantly breaks the boundaries of her own life, integrates the contemporary Chinese social structure and autonomously presents what she sees and gains.
In 2016, Dai started the project Women at Home, which centres on a group of women who live alone. The series presents the diverse status of the individual females and shows their emotions under contemporary Chinese society. In 2020, the work was reported by many of China’s major media including Yi Tiao, Tencent News Guyu Vision, The Paper, China Daily, Interface, Sanlian Life Week, iWeekly, Vista Story, Fashion Cosmo, City Zine, and others. The project was extended into a documentary series which in 2022 was available to view on the Tencent video platform.
In 2018, she self-published the photobook Whatever New York, which was the first book to include her placesplaces series.
About the Gallery
Once Gallery (Beijing, Shanghai)
Once Gallery was founded in the summer of 2021, after presenting an eponymous exhibition in a three-storey old lane house in Shanghai. By the end of the year, the gallery opened its space in Beijing, where founder Sylvia Xue Bai began to collaborate with contemporary artists who employ unique artistic language and whose works resonate with the current times while leaving the spectator with lasting impacts. With its focus on the curatorial context of each presentation, Once Gallery adopts new approaches appealing to those interested in learning and collecting works about artists the gallery represents and stimulates their passion for art. Launched in Beijing/Shanghai, Once Gallery aims to grow steadily and dynamically in the post-pandemic contemporary art landscape.