Li Xiaofeng, a 43-year-old Beijing artist, has found a way to link his  contemporary work with traditional Chinese art stretching back to the 10th Century.  In his art, the links are literal: he sews shards of porcelain from the Song, Ming, Yuan, and Qing dynasties on a leather undergarment to created full-length dresses and men’s jackets, complete with neckties. His warehouse studio contains bins of broken plates and other ceramics. Some of the porcelain bits were salvaged from the roof tiles of the emperor’s palace. Each piece
is sorted by age, color, and shape before being assembled into a porcelain “garment.”  Although the shards are not altered in any way, they are fitted so closely together into pleasing patterns the finished garments appear to have been designed for their materials. The works open on the sides or back, just like an actual dress or jacket, and can be modeled as if they were of fabric. Born in Hubei, Xiaofeng graduated from Hubei Huanggang Normal College before earning a degree from the Central Academy of Fine Arts in 2002. The gallery’s current exhibition, “SAVE AS: Contemporary Chinese Art Born of Ancient Traditions,” is his first exhibition outside the Far East and continues through February 28, 2009. See more artworks here.

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