Disputing Territories

Disputing Territories

After the first phase of the project in the MAXXI, Rome, where it focused on the question of the impacts of diverse religious on geopolitical reality and the future of the world, “Bâton-Serpent” is arriving in Beijing’s Red Brick Museum. Endowed with a transformed reincarnation, it is also diverted from the question of religious confrontations. In this new project, which combines some major works from the MAXXI exhibition and newly introduced works, Huang Yong Ping addresses the question of territorial disputes as the main cause of the restructuring of the power relationship in both domestic and global societies today. Zoning becomes the new strategy to occupy and transform the museum’s spatial structure, hence, its cultural and political meanings. Inspired by the recent international negotiations on the “Air Defense Identification Zone” that has intensified the process of reorganization of the global order, Huang Yong Ping turns the museum into a new “theatre of the world”, in which humanized animals in various embodiments – un-skinned snakes, a mad cow and sheep, horses, birds, deer, boars, oxen and lions with heads and bodies separated – are playing out scenes of circus, battle, destruction, apocalypse and exile.

Five zones are created. They continue to expand, transgressing borders and evading the territory of the others. Borders are constantly moving. The world is always being remapped. Negotiation and strife are inevitable. And, we are all expected to provide our answers: Who are we? Where are we? How can we live with others?

The panel participants will provide their views and answers to these questions.. And public debates and even disputes will be welcome…


Hou Hanru(curator and moderator)
Huang Yong Ping
Fei Dawei
Alexandra Munroe
Gao Shiming
Guo Xiaoyan
Wang Hui

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Panel discussion: Disputing Territories

Huang Yong Ping, Bâton-Serpent II,
Red Brick Art Museum, Beijing
26 September 2015