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Wang Mai

The Fertility of Capitalism, China, 2006

Paint on wood, 140x60x36 cm

Courtesy of Alexander Ochs Galleries, Berlin/Beijing

Wang Mai is one of the most interesting and outstanding artists in the contemporary Chinese art scene. His artistic creations are affected by a particular topicality of content, mainly focusing on issues of energy and exploitation of resources and the environment. The artist is also concerned with the dangers of the blind belief in the false promises of capitalism, and with the strong influence of big industrial icons.

The row of androids representing the giants of corporate avarice leave no doubt as to the artist’s cynical stance regarding the closed circle of corporations and states who dictate the world’s economic agenda. In his work “Fertility of Capitalism”, as in his other works Wang Mei insinuates ironic and critical allusions, while employing visual attractions and symbols borrowed from industrial society’s illusory world. To create the wooden figurines Wang Mai used machinery patterns for steel molds from a governmental arms factory that operated in Beijing in the 1960s. These robots are nothing but primitive icons, a row of androids spouting petroleum into the center of the art work.