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Beyond the Painting via the Underbelly

This doctoral practice-led research explores the concept of the Underbelly and reframes this area of potential vulnerability or nothingness as a new conceptual framework for painting. This research aims to elucidate the back or underside of the painting, the leftover, the frame, or otherwise neglected/hidden. My practice-led study re-examines aesthetics (Kant, Derrida) and deconstruction (Derrida) as methods while aligning with new digital technologies to generate a radically different approach to painting in the contemporary context.

My practice-led research is situated between abstract painting and quasi-sculpture, examining the viability of the Underbelly as a form of studio practice. Artworks may consist of drawing, painting, tearing, scrolling, folding, and following up digital laser cutting and printing. Its appearance merges the hybrid abstraction of gesture and geometrical imagery as well as sculptural exterior to reflect the research, due to the tenacious flat painting is a ubiquitous presence. Also, utilising digital technologies can arguably enhance an alternative depth by contrasting the space that is manually tearing addresses.

Utilising a discursive methodology, drawing on monographs of Derrida, Foucault, Deleuze, offers an analytic and critical reconsideration of Deconstruction, Heterotopia, Fold as it pertains to my work, and the creation of other relevant artists. Case studies include Lucio Fontana, Angela De La Cruz, Richard Wilson, Racheal Whiteread, and Xu Bing.

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More about Xiao

MA in Fine Art, 2010 Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, London, UK

BA in Fine Art, 2003 Fine Art College of Hangzhou Teachers University, Hangzhou, China

Since 2011, Full-time artist

2003-2008, Full-time, Art & Design Tutor at Hangzhou Electrical Technic College, Hangzhou, China

2002-2008, Part-time, Director of Creative Section at HuaTai Advertise Company, Hangzhou, China

2004-2008, Founder, NanShan Fine Art School, Hangzhou, China

2011-2014, Partime, Project assistant, Antenna international department, National Gallery, London, UK

Solo Exhibitions

2018 'Unseen Paintings', Beijing Art Now Gallery, Chaoyang District, Beijing, China

2016 'The Possibilities of Paintings', Beijing Art Now Gallery, Chaoyang District, Beijing, China

2013 'The Painting of small difference', Beijing Art Now Gallery, Beijing, China

2011 'Aspects', Galeria WSA, Warsaw, Poland

Selected Exhibitions

2020 ' Waiting for Connection' ,BACA Art centre, Beijing, China

2018 'Here/Elsewhere', Hexiangning Art Museum, Shenzhen, China

2015 'Elevation No.2', Miami Art Basel's Public, Collins Park, Miami Beach, US

2014 'Wrap Up The Gallery', Anatomy Museum, King's College, London, UK

2019 'Interviews with Well-known Contemporary British Artists', Author, Art Book, China Fine Arts Publishing Group

2018 Interview conversation on Art News Paper (Chinese version), Issue 6, Modern Media

2017 'Precious Style', Art & Culture Magazine, Robb Report

2015 'Art Basel Public', Catalogue, Art Basel Miami Beach

2012 'RA Summer Exhibition', Catalogue, Royal Academy of Art