Town Hall Gallery is pleased to have two very large and beautiful photographs by Huang Xu, on loan from Arc One Gallery in Melbourne, as part of the Weapons of Mass Consumption exhibition.
Huang Xu uses the 3D scanners usually used by archeologists to create his richly haunting images of tattered remains of plastic bags.
"For Huang Xu, the mundane history of the plastic shopping bag evokes a critical commentary on China's acceleration towards a free-market economy and the global shift in the fortunes of capitalism."
Though free plastic bags were virtually unheard of in much of China before the early 1990s, around 3 million plastic bags are now used in China every day. Levels of plastic pollution were so high in the months leading up to the Olympics that China imposed a ban on lightweight bags. For many Chinese, this environmental crisis was perceived as symptomatic of the negative impact of the country's recent race to embrace capitalism.
Huang Xu was born in Beijing in 1968. He set up the Substratum Art Studio in 1989, the Migrant Bird Art Studio in 1991 and the Big Basin Studio in 2003. He has exhibited in Australia and China and works as a professional photographer in Beijing.
Huang Xu's work is on loan from Arc One gallery in Melbourne.