THE GAO BROTHERS
MA DEFAN  
MUNKH 

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THE GAO BROTHERS

- Sculptors + Painters -
(New York, Beijing, Berlin) 

THE GAO BROTHERS

The Sculptors, Painters, Photographic, Performance and Installation Artists 


The collector of The Gao Brothers, Adrian David, holds an art-collection of James Ensor, Francis Picabia, Rene Magritte, Paul Klee, Yves Klein, Andy Warhol, David Hockney, Frank Stella, Keith Haring etc. and The Gao Brothers.

“Although I am a big Andy Warhol fan and I help many museums with good work for their exhibitions … my favorite (contemporary) artwork is The Gao Brothers’ “The Execution of Christ”.

(Adrian David, Curator and Collector, Belgium)

The Gao Brothers (born 1956/ 1961 in Shandong, China) are the most influential and most uncompromisingly critical artists in China and maybe now in the world. 

The modern and contemporary art in China (be it known by Xu Bing, Ai Weiwei or who so ever) is not thinkable without these daring courageous art-pioneers: The Gao Brothers. These two brothers are the Beuys and Warhols of Asia.


In their work-threshold, there is no painting, no sculpture, no installation without a meaningful standpoint and a warning statement of importance on national and international fascism and authoritarian politics; (hello, today!). At the same time, the artists always offer a solution to change the circumstances we are in. 

The artists seek to draw a linking line through history to the present and future in order to prove and alter the seemingly unbreakable facts and the ‘Lauf der Zeit’. The mother of change is awareness. And Awareness is the quest of these artists.


Besides this commitment, the artworks are created with highest artistic proficiency and in best quality. Paintings, collages are in the pop- and post-pop art genre, using acrylic paint and photography. The sculptures and installations are monumental, made of bronze. Precious. So precious that even the critized wouldn’t dare to destroy them.


The Gao Brothers’ live-performances are acts of socio-political dimension always hitting the nail on the head, pointing out the truth, and offering the first step for a change – such as the BIG HUG:

Strangers hug each other in a most human attitude for Peace. 

In 2020, the visionary HUG performance of The Gao Brothers has been born 20 years ago and still had been ongoing – besides now. But after the human socializing has been limited to the mere virtual, due to and during the Corona-times, people, even strangers, will be eager for physical acts like handshakes, hugs and hugs and love. There is a documentary treasure of the 20 Years of Hugging for a retrospective that needs to be done!

       

The Gao Brothers have been exhibited literally all over the world. The New York Times writing about them, and collectors and curators cherish them. They are dissident artists, who are black-listed in China; however, Gao Zhen never fled the country. He has a cause!


For full detailed list of exhibitions see: https://www.galerieadriandavid.com/projects/interview-en/

MA DEFAN

- Ink Painter, Sculptor -
(Beijing, Paris)

Ma Defan is a Chinese artist of performance, cloth sculptures and ink painting. It is important to know that ink painting in Asia for thousands of years usually has been done and cultured exclusively by men. In protest to this authoritarian genderism, Ma Defan made ink painting become her statement of strength and empowerment. Combining ink and performance, she arms herself with an enormous brush in order to use it with a likewise enormous effort – and a lot of ink. The result are brush strokes of mighty expressionism. This artistic procedure is a dramatic and theatrical event. The paintings thereafter a feast of energy. One may think of Hermann Nitsch, yet his bloody red fluid here becoming a black ink stream. Even more ink she uses when she creates her cloth-sculptures. The voluminous cloth is fully soaked in black ink and the intense black glossy glow makes a majestic almost sacral impression with the archaic form. 

Ma Defan’s other mastership is in the artistic partnership with the film director Zhang Yimou with whom she collaborates designing his film costumes – and for the grand Opening Gala of the Olympic Games 2008 in Beijing that stunned the world.

She has exhibitions in Paris and the US and in Asia.


MUNKH

- Metal Sculptor -
(Mongolia) 

Munkh (Munkh-Erdene Munkhzhorig) is a Mongolian sculptor. Only in his early 20th, he already has been invited several times as ‘Artist in Residency’ to South Korea by the Korean Art Institute and by the renown Australian gallerist Brian Wallace (Red Gate Gallery 798). 

Munkh’s proficiency lies in monumental metal sculptures – such as “The Leader” (3.5m) showing the way”. And in sharp contrast to this, he creates wild beasts like enormous bears and wolves – building them in the very nature those beasts come from or live in. The bears he did in the Sth. Korean forest, the wolf in the Mongolian steppe. 

It is the authenticity that is the credo and the value of this very promising upcoming artist.