“There are lines that you can’t cross in this state,” Zhao Zhao
. But, given Zhao’s training under the ever-iconoclastic Ai Weiwei
, these steadfast rules have a tendency to be broken. “I try to resist being tamed as an artist,” he says; despite China’s tight restrictions on civilian firearms, his recent works used gunshots to create shattered constellations in panes of glass.
At right, catch the artist with his firearm poised in a peek behind the scenes—the glass littered with bullets and shattered. Although Zhao may not be the first artist to explore the gunshot—think of Xiao Lu
’s infamous gunshots fired at her own mirrored museum installation
in 1989—he might be the first to turn a violently shattered pane into an artwork as alluring as the glittering night sky.