Huang Yong Ping and Chen Zhen are Chinese-born artists living in Paris who share deep spiritual and metaphysical roots in Taoist thought and employ Western avant garde art strategies to explore such contemporary concerns as the interplay of nature and the artificial; tradition versus progress; and history and ideology in a worldwide consumerist society.
“The installations in the main gallery of the Museum culminate a month’s work-in-residence in New York. The project is specific not only to the gallery space but also to the New Museum’s location near New York’s Chinatown and the sweatshops of the downtown garment district. Huang and Chen are fascinated with the myth of New York as an ethnic mosaic and its reality as one of the world’s most intense concentrations of wealth and poverty, materialism and spirituality, cultural interaction and ideological strife, immigration and racism …” -Huang Yong Ping, Chen Zhen, and France Morin, exhibition brochure.
“Chinese Hand Laundry and Field of Waste were the first New York installations by these Paris-based Chinese expatriate artists. The metaphorical and metaphysical transformations of The New Museum’s gallery into a hand laundry and a garment factory encouraged visitors to think about Asian and American history and its record in the lives and labor of generations past.”
-From The New Museum Annual Report, 1992-1994