Zhang Xiaogang
Chinese, born 1958
High auction record
$12m, Sotheby's, 2014
Blue chip
Represented by internationally recognized galleries.
Selected exhibitions
Made in Asia,
Opera Gallery
Installment 4: Chinese Artists at the Fondation Louis Vuitton,
Fondation Louis Vuitton
A New Dynasty – Created in China,
ARoS Aarhus Art Museum

Relying on memory to recreate a highly personal version of his country’s history, Zhang Xiaogang makes art that is as much about himself as it is about China’s past. The grim imaginary families in his “Bloodlines: The Big Family” paintings of the 1990s and his 2005–06 series of grisaille portraits in oil reveal countless narratives about the aspirations and failures of the Cultural Revolution as well as Zhang’s own emotions. Like the blank visages of the individuals in these paintings, Zhang’s brass and concrete sculptures of figures, as well as implements used for recording history (such as fountain pens, notebooks, and light bulbs, all 2009), appear compressed and distorted by memory, age, and some unknown force.

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