1971 · China
Further Biographical Context for Zhou Yangming
Born in 1971 in Taizhou, China, Zhou Yangming has always preferred to live a secluded life. He previously lived and worked in Beijing’s Yuan Ming Yuan village; Dong village; China’s largest art district, Song Zhuang artist village; and Shanghai. He currently lives in a suburb of Zhejiang province. Zhou studied at various art colleges, including the China Academy of Art, Academy of Arts and Design of Tsinghua University, and Xu Beihong’s studio at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. Since he followed his own rules and exhibited great independence in thought and action, he was often criticized by his professors. Yet, Zhou firmly believes that art starts with the expression of sensation and ends with the depth of discipline and self-cultivation. Thus, to him, art is the process of achieving the concept of spiritual infinity.
Li Xianting, also known as the godfather of Chinese contemporary art, referenced the following from the Dao De Jing in reference to Zhou: “The Way bears sensation, Sensation bears memory, Sensation and memory bear abstraction, and abstraction bears all the world.” He included Zhou’s work in a group show that he curated called Prayer Beads and Brush Strokes. This coincided with the Buddhist practice “Five Tone Dharma” that Zhou encountered in 2009, which involved drawing a one centimetre long line diagonally in a pre-set rectangular square while chanting “Namo Amitabha” and repeating the process five times with five lines drawn before drawing another five lines diagonally in the opposite direction and then repeating the drawing continuously.