Further Biographical Context for Chen Chen
Chen Chen was born in 1983, grew up during the 1990s and was inspired by the artistic culture of the time. In the United Kingdom, a group of artists known as the YBAs, or Young British Artists, dominated the artistic culture of the decade. They were a loosely affiliated and diverse group, united generally by their age and nationality. Many of the members had attended the Royal College of Art and Goldsmiths in London, and were favoured by Charles Saatchi, the ‘super collector’ of art at the time. The most well-known member of the group is arguably Damien Hirst, and other members included Chris Ofili, Tracey Emin, Marc Quinn, Gavin Turk, Sarah Lucas and Sam Taylor-Johnson (née Sam Taylor-Wood). Through their use of shock tactics and sensationalism, the YBAs garnered a divisive reputation image which was further fuelled by their use of throwaway materials, wild lifestyles and an attitude that was at the same time rebellious and entrepreneurial. The group was predominant in the British art scene in the 1990s and their group show ‘Sensation’ is now viewed as legendary. Relational Aesthetics, a term coined by curator Nicholas Bourriaud to describe the act of making art based on human relations and their social context, became a influential idea in the 1990s. Works by artists such as Douglas Gordon, Gillian Wearing, Philippe Parenno and Liam Gillick were described as key artists who worked to this outline.