Hu Zi, Florence Neptune V, 2018, gouache on paper, 89 3⁄8 × 44".

Hu Zi, Florence Neptune V, 2018, gouache on paper, 89 3⁄8 × 44".

Hu Zi

Don Gallery | 东画廊

In her recent exhibition “Stone Flesh,” the Shanghai-based painter Hu Zi, widely recognized for her focus on portraiture, presented a quirky collision of mythologies with new oil paintings and sepia-toned gouaches based on Michelangelo’s David, 1501–1504; Bartolomeo Ammannati’s Fountain of Neptune, 1565–74; and other Renaissance sculptures, interspersed with and punctuated by paintings of David Gilmour, the British rock star and former lead guitarist of Pink Floyd. Known also for her roster of celebrity portraits—stand-ins for the artist herself by way of, say, Johnny Depp’s Edward Scissorhands or Keith Richards, but also by way of Sarah Lucas, Mozart, or Egon Schiele—Hu Zi uses these pop-culture and art-historical icons to speculate about whether it was ever possible to live for the power of beauty, or whether that idea has always been a sham masquerading as the beauty of power.

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW and save up to 65% off the newsstand price for full online access to this issue and our archive.

Order the PRINT EDITION of the September 2018 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.