Vanguard gallery

Mountains Aside



Mountains Aside

Artists:Xiao Jiang

Duration:May 15–July 31, 2021

Venue: 4A-204, 50 Moganshan Road, Shanghai



Vanguard Gallery is pleased to present “Mountains Aside” by Xiao Jiang, the artist’s fourth solo exhibition with the gallery. The exhibition lays emphasis on new paintings from Xiao Jiang’s ongoing interior series. The works will be on view at Vanguard Gallery from May 15 through July 31, 2021.


Derived from Xiao Jiang’s latest paintings of interior theme conceived in early 2021, where image of the scenes and figures captured in the artist’s daily life were developed, reconfigured and coordinated on canvas, the exhibition furthers the artist’s representative style, in which he employs contrasting placid colors to render a hazy atmosphere and dissolves the subjects into geometric color blocks. The eye is allured by the paintings’ ever-changing perspectives and multilayered scenes in which subtle motions were portrayed with moist or dry brushstrokes, or the absence of a figure was tactfully implied by the composition of furnitures. For Xiao Jiang, the seemingly insignificant leisure and mundaneness caught in the interlude of daily scenes possesses a distinctive aura.

The artist’s iconic depiction of landscape continues to find its presence in this series of interior paintings, introduced as a mountain-lined vista beyond the window. Whether by enhancing a sense of immersion and panorama owed to the large-scale canvas, or generating intimacy drawn by small-size works, Xiao Jiang demonstrates masterly harmony between the internal and the external, proximity and remoteness, reality and fiction: the indoor utensils appear concrete while the scenery outside the window seems to be rendered with imagination; the figures are present in the domestic setting while their mind has wandered into the mountains afar. In Xiao Jiang’s painting, the boundary between reality and fiction is eternally blurred.


Concurrent to the gallery show, a parallel exhibition will be on view at a pop-up space on Tongren Road from June 2, where a selection of paintings from Xiao Jiang’s various series since the 2010s are presented. Titled “An Inward Odyssey”, the parallel exhibition is an unprecedented occasion endowed with new possibility and intertextuality to contemplated the artist’s creation in accordance to the site-specific display. These two interlaced exhibitions act in coordination with each other as both internal and external clues, so as to present more thoroughly Xiao Jiang’s artistic concept and practice. The exhibition venue of “An Inward Odyssey” is generously supported by Mr. Lu Xun and Sifang Art Museum.






About the artist

At the first glance at Xiao Jiang’s works, one would be encompassed with the sharp atmosphere. Something is left unsaid by his works, expressing the power in silence. Xiao Jiang’s works have drawn materials from episodes of movies and real life which are so familiar to people that are easily ignored. Under the artist’s unique perspective, they are cut out and recombined. Xiao takes inspiration from reality but structures them into an absolute fantasy world, leading the audience to dislocated visionary feelings.


Xiao Jiang was born in Jinggangshan, Jiangxi Province in 1977. He studied at China Academy of Art from 2000 to 2003. He now lives and works in Shanghai. His recent solo exhibitions include: “In Common”, LEO Gallery, Hongkong, China (2020); “Right in Sight”; Vanguard Gallery, Shanghai (2018); “MOUTAINS”, MOCUBE, Beijing (2017). He also attended the following group exhibitions: “Decoherence”, ShanghART M50, Shanghai, China (2017). “A Turning Moment”, Shanghai Duolun Museum of Modern Art, Shanghai, China (2019); “The Kind Stranger”, UNArt Center, Shanghai, China (2019); “Incandescence”, BIG SPACE x Chino gallery, Shanghai, China (2019); “Group Exhibition in Summer—To Youth”, Platform China Contemporary Art Institute, Beijing, China (2019).