Wang Xin is an artist keen on challenging the existing frame work of art circles. She frequently draws inspiration for her art from artistic institutions, systems, and rules, using them as the focus of her creations. Wang is also a licensed hypnotist, possessing an aptitude for manipulating the perceptions of heraudience and influencing their subconscious through her works. Her iconic use of the color pink is not only closely related to her “hypnotic” themes, but it also creates a sort of blurred and ambiguous undercurrent in her works.
Unknown Artists Agency is comprised of multiple interactive, site-specific installations in which Wang Xin challenges the status of the artist as well as the art world’s current ecosystem. In particular, Wang’s most ambitious installation encourages participation as soon as audiences walk in. Upon entering, visitors are asked to purchase a ticket imprinted with a QR code at reception. The symbolic act of purchasing a ticket is part of Wang’s ongoing “No Starving Artists: Entrance” project, in which she reaffirms the significance of artists’ work, as their labor is often undervalued. Subsequently, viewers scan their tickets at a turnstile to enter the installation. Once inside audiences follow a carpeted path lined with headsets that leads toa ball pit filled with more than 45,000 pink balls, a VR environment, an artists agency office, and a large advertising board. Once inside, viewers can stroll along the walkway that forms a part of the installation. Headsetsare available for viewers’ use in intervals along the walkway, where various fictional characters can be heard introducing the exhibition and its works. Following along the path, viewers can eventually reach the “island” of shining pink lights surrounded by 45,000 pink balls. A large billboard stands in the center of the island, and a transmission device to the virtual world can befound among the sea of balls separating the “island” and the “mainland,” sending viewers to the VR world created by Wang. This fantasy world serves as adissemination of information about the artist and her work of the past, present, and future!
There are 45,000 unknown artists’ contact information stored in the balls. The purchased ticket entitles audiences to take (and keep) one of the pink balls,open it, and unravel an unknown artist’s information. In the middle of the ball pit lies a virtual experience, A Virtual Land Where Stored an Artist’s Past, Present and Future Artworks and Related Information, where ticket holders can view all of Wang Xin’s past artwork strewn and in decay across a deserted landscape. Adjacent to the pool of pink balls is an office stationed in a corner. This is the Unknown Artists Agency where agents continue to search formore unknown artists. Once more information on unknown artists has been gathered, the new pink balls are carried over to a playful miniature slide thati s used to transport the balls from the agency office to the ball pit. The slide emerges from a large LED board advertising the “Unknown Artists Agency.”
Wang Xin’s most recent work Art Can Save The World – The Tower of Art Energy (2018) is part of Unknown Artists Agency: Wang Xin Solo Exhibition. This installation is alongside other works that make up a lively yet serious sceneof art ecology. It is comprised of three parts: 1) the thematic tower, 2) an LCD screen playing various clips of world crises (natural disasters, pollution, war) in shades of pink, and 3) an “energy ball collection and conversion system” (interactive). When art ecology and social ecology are juxtaposed, willart have the ability to save the world?