Magician Space is proud to present the first solo exhibition of Beijing-based artist and filmmaker Chen Zhou. Chen Zhou’s works varies from medium to medium like a trail of stream of conscious thoughts that evade expectations of what the role of the artist should be. Fascinated with the contradictions inherent in film and video, his work frequently set up incongruous relationships between images that evoke a disjointed modernity unfolding in the world.
With I’m not not not Chen Zhou, the artist describes his filmic process as a mental journey similar to an encounter with a mystery acquaintance. The use of a script has been dispensed altogether and with this mystery double, Chen Zhou travels in-between roles of artist and filmmaker to immerse audiences in a playing field of loose associations underlying the malleability of meaning in visual culture. Chen Zhou describes his strategy as a look and a step at a time, the artist is curious about the forces of decision-making in the daily world that cause the letter ‘p’ to be printed on a peppershaker or the imaginative logic that coerces two twins to have plastic surgery.
For this exhibition, an additional motif is introduced in the artist’s use of the color yellow. Chen Zhou infuses the color with his own meaning and uses it as a technique to heighten the audience’s sensitivity to a meticulously arranged mis en scene. Seemingly an arbitrary choice, it is in fact a mischievous pun on the specific relationship yellow has with the medium of film in China. Rather than a direct reference to pornography, the use of yellow refers to an area of ‘promiscuity’ between objects and concepts apparently unrelated to one another. It is a notion that underlines the artist’s subtle movement between film and art, the plethora of collaborative relationships activated by his work, as well as the unlikely ‘encounters’ instigated by his practice.