Daily Dose: Zhang Huan


One of the most important Chinese artists of his time, painter, sculptor, and performance artist Zhang Huan is limited only by his imagination.

Zhang began his career creating performance pieces that confronted authority and tested his endurance. Now, with countless ideas, unlimited space and manpower, and endless opportunities to exhibit his work, he’s making massive paintings from temple ash, giant copper and animal-skin sculptures, and enormous works on paper in a 75-acre Shanghai studio that employs more than 100 assistants.

Visit the artist’s website, check out his show at London’s White Cube, watch an interview, get details on his directorial debut of Handel’s Semele in Brussels, and buy

his new Phaidon monograph.

Zhang Huan, Skin, 1997. One of a series of 25 black-and-white photographs. Collection of Friedman Benda, New York. Courtesy the artist © Zhang Huan

Zhang Huan, To Raise the Water Level in a Fishpond, 1997. Color photograph of performance in Beijing. Courtesy the artist © Zhang Huan

Zhang Huan, Chinese Flag No. 1, 2007. Ash on linen. Courtesy the artist © Zhang Huan

Zhang Huan, 1/2, 1998. One of a series of three color photographs. Courtesy the artist © Zhang Huan

Zhang Huan. Zhu Gangqiang No.4, 2009. Ash on linen. Courtesy White Cube © Zhang Huan

Zhang Huan, Giant No.3, 2008. Cowskin, steel, wood, and polystyrene foam. Courtesy Pace Wildenstein © Zhang Huan