Vile Bodies



Yesterday was the last day of 'Vile Bodies' at the White Rabbit gallery. The visitors were welcomed by Zhang Dali's 'Chinese Offspring', which have also been called a "mass hanging" of naked migrant workers.

Eyes and mouths closed, the raw bodies, each one numbered, were suspended in silence, with black inscriptions painted on their back.

Since 2003 the Chinese artist has portrayed over 100 immigrant workers, to acknowledge them and the pivotal role they play in and for China.

These people are originally from rural China and immigrate to cities to work on construction sites. The artist considers them as being the most important members of the Chinese race, and though, they live at the bottom of the society.

Zhang Dali hang them upside down, showing their impossible life condition and the incapacity to change their own fates.

Zhang Dali was born in 1963, in the capital of Heilongjiang province, Harbin. He now lives and works in Beijing.


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Born in France, Sofie Dieu’s first encounter with art was through church. With a penchant for ritual and spirituality, the artist is best known for her fragile, sombre, and sometimes violent ink paintings and textile works.

 

Poetic and humanist, her practice draws on her journeys to China and Australia. She explores how identity and memory fluctuate according to their immediate environment. Landscapes, people, secrecy, healing, and the dichotomy between light and darkness are some of her recurring themes.

  

Multi-art prizes and award finalist, her work was included in the Sydney North Art Prize, Waterhouse Natural Science prize and the Contemporary Art Award amongst others. In 2016, she worked on the Camperdown Cemetery installation for Sydney Biennale. In 2017, her work will be shown during Vivid and Mental Health Month in Sydney.