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Cai Guoqiang 蔡国强

Chinese, b. 1957

5,681 followers
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Cai Guoqiang 蔡国强

Chinese, b. 1957

5,681
Followers
Biography

While living in Japan from 1986 to 1995, Cai Guo-Qiang began exploring the properties of gunpowder in his drawings. Cai’s use of gunpowder has become central to his practice, leading to his experimentation with explosives and the development of his signature ignition events. Drawn to the medium for its myriad of associations, his gunpowder work, in addition to his repertoire of large-scale installations and social projects, draws upon Eastern philosophy, Maoist sentiment, and contemporary social issues. Though his fireworks are immediate signifiers of Chinese culture, Cai’s aim is to transcend these boundaries, establishing dialogue between viewers and the world around them. His site-specific work often alludes to the culture or history of the city or region where his work is presented, as in his series of ignitions “The Century with Mushroom Clouds: Project for the 20th Century” (1995-96), conducted at symbolic locations in the United States to, as Cai has said, "depict the 'face' of the nuclear bomb that represents modern-day technology."

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Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Blue chip status
Blue chip representation
Represented by internationally reputable galleries.
User
Solo show at a major institution
Guggenheim Museum, and 6 more
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and 6 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
Artforum, and 6 more
Fair
Included in a major biennial
Venice Biennale International Exhibition, and 3 more
Biography

While living in Japan from 1986 to 1995, Cai Guo-Qiang began exploring the properties of gunpowder in his drawings. Cai’s use of gunpowder has become central to his practice, leading to his experimentation with explosives and the development of his signature ignition events. Drawn to the medium for its myriad of associations, his gunpowder work, in addition to his repertoire of large-scale installations and social projects, draws upon Eastern philosophy, Maoist sentiment, and contemporary social issues. Though his fireworks are immediate signifiers of Chinese culture, Cai’s aim is to transcend these boundaries, establishing dialogue between viewers and the world around them. His site-specific work often alludes to the culture or history of the city or region where his work is presented, as in his series of ignitions “The Century with Mushroom Clouds: Project for the 20th Century” (1995-96), conducted at symbolic locations in the United States to, as Cai has said, "depict the 'face' of the nuclear bomb that represents modern-day technology."

Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Blue chip status
Blue chip representation
Represented by internationally reputable galleries.
User
Solo show at a major institution
Guggenheim Museum, and 6 more
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and 6 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
Artforum, and 6 more
Fair
Included in a major biennial
Venice Biennale International Exhibition, and 3 more
Articles Featuring Cai Guoqiang 蔡国强
These 10 Artists Are Making Urgent Work about the Environment
Apr 20th, 2020
These 10 Artists Are Making Urgent Work about the Environment
Cai Guo-Qiang Is Giving Philadelphians Free Rides on a Fleet of Fiery Pedicabs
Aug 28th, 2017
Cai Guo-Qiang Is Giving Philadelphians Free Rides on a Fleet of Fiery Pedicabs
8 Artworks That Self-Destruct
Jun 14th, 2017
8 Artworks That Self-Destruct
These 10 Unrealized Artworks Would Have Been Spectacular
Dec 9th, 2016
These 10 Unrealized Artworks Would Have Been Spectacular
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