Expert Comments on Cui Xiuwen¡¯s Solo Exhibition Spiritual Realm

Zhang Zikang

Curator of Today Art Museum 

Cui Xiuwen is a young artist and a thinker, in particular good at thinking among female artists. She has great potential and made numerous great innovations. In the past two years, she has been in pursuit of artistic conception, and paid more attention to spiritual expression. The series Existential Emptiness and Spiritual Realm to be exhibited at Today Art Museum is stunning and shocking. I think she has taken an enormous leap. I hope she will carry on the artistic exploration unceasingly and thus give momentum to artistic creation. As she is still young, she is sure to be able to reach a higher level as long as she constantly taps into her creative energy.

Wu Hong

Consultant and curator of Smart Museum of Art, Chicago University 

Cui Xiuwen is very brave, mature in mind and has great potential, so I am not surprised at her series Spiritual Realm, Because it belongs to her. She has always been sensitive for the mental process that has puzzled women or is puzzling men now. In addition, to my joy, Cui Xiuwen has now broadened her views on human conditions and feelings rather than on sex and girls originally given priority to and bearing personal experience in her works.

Huang Du

Independent curator and critic

Cui is a subtle artist, courageous enough to venture into some fields that may daunt others. She put her works beyond a normal state, from the early candid camera at the nightclub to the recent Spiritual Realm with human body either on the stage or in a dreamlike state. In my view, human bodies are in several states: scientific body, natural body, social body and artistic body. Cui is very clever at transferring these states. In Spiritual Realm, she promotes human body from natural body and scientific body to artistic body, where lies the wonder of Spiritual Realm.

Gu Zhenqing

Independent curator and director of Li-Space/Whitebox Museum of Art 

Cui Xiuwen is a very keen artist, often approaching some touchy subjects, either social or spiritual. She has made persistent efforts at some points. In addition, her language is relatively international. In the past two years, with a deeper understanding of the contemporary art, she no longer regards it as a certain artistic form, a tool, a methodology, a form or a style, nor resorts to the social reality in China to elucidate problems. In contrast, she makes for the depth of human nature, self-cognition and exploration to probe the simplest human nature at the human spirit level. I think the artist¡¯s effort also carries significance to many other subjects.

Jia Fangzhou

Critic and curator

Of all women artists in the 90s, Cui Xiuwen is the most productive one. She was not excellent at modeling at college, but excellent at her concern about the society, self-comprehension and female nature. So she did better and better, deeper and deeper in her depth of thinking, her concern about cotemporary mankind and spiritual values from her earliest Lady¡¯s to the present. I feel Spiritual Realm very interesting, leading one to a state of self, selflessness to face oneself, not the outside world. In such a state of reverie, the imaginary world is separated from the real world, leaving the audience in the real world to their imagination. This artistic practice reflects the artist¡¯s special ability to tap into human nature. 

Yu Ke

Professor, Critic, and Curator of Sichuan Fine Arts Institute 

Nothing except material benefits can act on today¡¯s life. The cultural shock and passion in the past is thinner and thinner, aloof bit by bit from spiritual comfort that art acts on man. But luckily we have an artist like Cui Xiuwen, who explores the inner need peculiar to our times in a thinking manner. She hints us: outside the reality and material category, there must be a certain state we are unaware of and a space that we cannot see or touch. They swim away from reality and function, but affect our dignity as humans. She puts the experience of dream in public space for us to share and ponder: What do human really need in such an era of material desires?

Hang Chunxiao

Critic, curator, and curator of Times Art Museum

Cui Xiuwen is a very sensitive artist and emphasizes spiritual experience. She gained spiritual experience from social and historic topics in her early works. And in the past two years, the subject matter of her works has been fuzzier and fuzzier, gradually clearing up assistance of external subjects. On the contrary, she views thing-in-itself directly and puts her hands on metaphysical experience. Cui Xiuwen keeps coming up with problems, unique views and methods for our society, mirroring the basic value of contemporary art in reviewing events and history.


Art director of Ullens Center for Contemporary Art 

During her art journey, an important reason that Cui Xiuwen varies her works is due to her dogged pursuit of her own spiritual growth and life consciousness. As a very sensitive woman, she values her own innermost being, loyal to her own innermost being, and very clever at expressing what she wants to convey. As a result, she invariably provides surprises for us, either her works or herself. In the last two years she has gone deep into human nature from different angles, probing into variations of spirit and human nature to experience the essence of life by intuition and feeling. Her works have undergone great changes, increasingly concise in visual composition, gentle in pictures and in-depth in connotations...... I hope she holds on to her individuality, ways of doing things, and what she likes. That is a Cui Xiuwen we are looking forward to.

Liu Chunfeng

Curator of National Art Museum of China

Xiuwen is a relatively comprehensive artist. She has a rigorous plan for her own works and her development. As a woman, she is relatively strong in reasoning and thinking ability so that her works are more conceptual than other women artists. This is very good.

Existential Emptiness and Spiritual Realm are Xiuwen¡¯s groundbreaking new works, while her previous works were eager to express ideas, more direct in language. And the two series betray her good grasp of artistic language. It can be said to be a renewal in ideas. Concept and language are so unified and compatible that they blur boundaries. I am very glad at the transformation of her works from the contemporary art of relatively ¡°traditional¡± western concept to localized artistic type in the oriental context. From this critical change, I feel a brand-new state of her artistic creation. As a female artist, Xiuwen gradually moves from the private space to the wide universe. We can see an artist obsessed with her own world is heading for the spiritual world of humanistic concern. In turn, the abstract expression of spirit tinges her works with a certain religious notion.