He Chengyao

Chinese, born 1964

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He Chengyao

Chinese, born 1964

Biography

The work of He Chengyao sits on the edge of taboos within Chinese culture, addressing unspoken issues such as mental illness and through the transgressive use of nudity. Though she started her career as an oil painter, a trip to the Great Wall inspired an impromptu performance piece, in which she stripped off her top and walked half-naked along an installation of work by German artist H. A. Schult. Since then she has worked mainly in performance and photography, often using herself and her mother, who suffers from mental illness, as subjects. In performances, she highlights the simple frustrations of everyday life, as in a poetic piece where she attempted to catch a form of light projected upon the wall.

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Biography

The work of He Chengyao sits on the edge of taboos within Chinese culture, addressing unspoken issues such as mental illness and through the transgressive use of nudity. Though she started her career as an oil painter, a trip to the Great Wall inspired an impromptu performance piece, in which she stripped off her top and walked half-naked along an installation of work by German artist H. A. Schult. Since then she has worked mainly in performance and photography, often using herself and her mother, who suffers from mental illness, as subjects. In performances, she highlights the simple frustrations of everyday life, as in a poetic piece where she attempted to catch a form of light projected upon the wall.