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Zhang Peili: Gloves and Messy Associations

Zhang Peili takes us through the concept behind his X? series in this video from the Inside the M+ Sigg Collection series. He had aimed to produce dozens of nearly identical paintings in the series by reducing technical and compositional changes to a minimum, to make the works seem like prints. In the end, he created around ten, but also wrote a manual with rules for reproducing the series. The mechanical approach and clinical subject challenge modernist ideas of art as self-expression.

In 1986, Zhang and Geng Jianyi co-founded the artist group Pond Society, one of the earliest conceptual art collectives, in Hangzhou. The collective’s goal was to deliver art from an academic context into public space through Happenings, installations, and collaborative works.

Oil on canvas painting of a still life of a pair of gloves. The fingers of the gloves point downwards. Both gloves are folded just around the wrist area.

Zhang Peili, X? Series: No. 4, 1987, oil on canvas. M+ Sigg Collection, Hong Kong. © Zhang Peili

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