Zhixin Liao has a special ability to find himself in strange situations. At airWG his residency developed under pandemic restrictions from April-July 2020 in which he invited visitors to break into his ground-level windows in order to see his newest works. Confinement is a relative experience. His permission to stay in the Netherlands restricted him within national borders for a period of time. Finding himself, once again, in a situation of not being able to leave, he decided to go out and search for these borders by bike. After touching the entire land border of the Netherlands Liao is now a participant at HISK in Ghent, where he continues to ride out into the landscape for occasional meetings with the Dutch border.
Recording landscapes between Sas van Gent and Gent, Liao weaves together a narrative of the legal, technological, psychological, and boring bureaucracy of EU borders. Art is born from its context, and Liao’s practice is now inseparable from the border-marking sculptures that dot the extremities of the Netherlands. Yet, in order to remain here, he is faced with an endless production of official documents to prove that he is a practicing artist, makes exhibitions, and is a useful member of Dutch or Belgian society. After cycling and recording the unique landscapes he has asked a group of friends and artists to help copy them, for this task he has been able to produce letters from them that affirm their active contribution to the Dutch art scene.
This exhibition is supported by the Mondriaan Fund.