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05 Nov 2018

Minsheng Art Museum Beijing. When Lines Become Boundaries

© Pei Yongmei 2018. Courtesy the artist and Minsheng Art Museum Beijing

Pei Yongmei
Minsheng Art Museum Beijing


Duration of the Exhibition: November 6 – November 25, 2018 Opening Reception: November 6, 15.30 Opening Hours: Tue-Sun: 10.00-17.00 Producer: Zhou Xujun. Curator: Henk Slager


+ 86 (0) 10-53232111

Minsheng Art Museum Beijing
Universal Creative Park, 9 Jiuxianqiao
Chaoyang District, Beijing
100015 P.R. China

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The work of Pei Yongmei shown in the exhibition When Lines Become Boundaries is characterized by a clear use of a fluid line: no fixed frames, no static forms of consciousness, but a dynamic, interacting line pattern that seamlessly intertwines a complex composition of aesthetic traditions, social urgencies and current ecological issues, and thus presents as an almost self-evident, assembled, multiplicity.

And with that, in a subtle, often implicit manner, it is shown how an actual artistic thinking – departing from the tradition and practice of drawing, but that also deliberately desires to inhabit the problems of the current precarity – should continually choose to enter into cross-connections. A thinking that not only refuses, but also opposes definitive forms of segmentation and reducing forms of stratification; a thinking that contrasts fixed visible forms with the finiteness of the single denominator that call in an unwavering way to a renewed view of infinity.

The French philosopher Jean-Luc Nancy typifies this activity in his publication The Pleasure in Drawing as a formative force: artistic drawing opens less towards its achievement, intention, and accomplishment, than toward a finality without end and the infinite renewal of ends, towards lines of sense marked by tracings, suspensions, and permanent interruptions.

In addition, Nancy points to the specific form of pleasure produced by the – fragmentary character of – artistic sketching: it is not the pleasure of the completion, but the pleasure of the attraction, the permanent interruption, the tension and the intensity. In other words: there is an inconclusive pleasure that is constantly focused on the very opening, towards its impulse, and towards its own possibility.

This is not a form of visualization that is guided by identifiable, recognizable, or measurable qualities, but one which is characterized by a non-conforming and unverifiable form: a form – or perhaps one should, like Nicolas Bourriaud, speak of an 'Exform' – as force that constitutes the element, moment, or dimension not of formalized but formative, ostensive thought across different medial fields.

The above perspectives form the starting point of Pei Yongmei's exhibition When Lines Become Boundaries at the Minsheng Art Museum in Beijing. The narrative of this presentation is based on a display system in which an ensemble of medial articulations (such as watercolors, paintings, ready-made's and video projections) – in direct confrontation and smooth dialogue – further modulate the potential dynamics and intense openness of drawing's intrinsic artistic thought processes, and with it moreover make an implicit protest against all modes of territorializing and forms of boundaries that want to frame and limit these drawing and thinking processes for disciplinary purposes.