Exhibitions/ Art Object

Divine Light Series No. 59, The Floating Incomplete Circle

Zhang Yu (Chinese, born 1959)
Ink on paper, framed
Image: 9 ft. 7 3/8 in. × 70 7/8 in. (293 × 180 cm)
Credit Line:
Lent by a private collection, Hong Kong
Rights and Reproduction:
© Zhang Yu
Not on view
A leading figure of “experimental ink” since the 1990s, Zhang has sought to bridge disparate artistic traditions across time and culture through mining the potential of the ink medium in nonfigurative work. In this monumental piece from Zhang’s Divine Light series, a giant circle surrounded by a radiant halo is suspended in a dark “sky” spangled with starlike dots of uninked paper. In the darkness above the sphere, the artist has impressed a single small seal that reads “Shiyu bi” (Brush of Shiyu)—Shiyu, or “stone rain,” being Zhang’s sobriquet. Dwarfed by the scale of the sphere, the red seal nonetheless declares man’s presence within this vast firmament, an allusion to the artist as creator.
Purchased directly from the artist around 2005-2006 by Michael Goedhuis, founder of the Estella Collection. Sold as part of Estella Collection to Acquavella Galleries, New York, NY. Sold at auction by Acquavella Galleries at Sotheby's Hong Kong, Wednesday, April 9, 2008 [Lot 01158], to current owner, a private collector in Hong Kong.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Ink Art: Past as Present in Contemporary China," December 9, 2013–April 6, 2014.