LI TINGWEI, Post Poster 3/3 (2017)

Health is a word that needs to be defined by different eras. In nowadays, it is perhaps used to represent a state of “physical and mental well-being”. Every breath we breathe mutually interacts with medical science, of which the subordinate disciplines of nutrition and health science prompt us to form a kind of value that pursues “health”. There is always some kind of pervasive information which seemingly provides us with instructions to achieve mentally and physical health.
After the Second World War, time acquired a new concept for human. The average life expectancy of human being reached a peak, while leisure time also increased. When thinking about how to balance between work and life, commerce became deadlocked. Since there is an apparent gap between work and life, people were also unsure about what they wished to gain from their work. This redefined commerce, and opened a new chapter for the ambition of commerce. In the evolution of the ways of human interaction, consumer society might only be the initial phase. Consumerism will not diminish as an outcome of people’s opposition to it; while the consumer is also the labour or producer, the voices to oppose consumerism will not lead to solid effects. Consumption is developed to a silent language to express oneself, conducting communication, and stimulate collaboration. The consumer society will keep existing, as long as there is still divergence in people’s ability to afford a decent life.
Half a century ago it was even allowed to smoke in the subway train. With science development and the study of human, some “accurate” scientific knowledge approached us, attempting to help us live longer. Does life become better? The answer is perhaps not always positive. The endless renewing scientific knowledges shape new thoughts, cultivate people with life styles that conforms better to the contemporary environment. In this deductive process, we should not forget that capital is the driving force for scientific development. Capital operation requires to stimulate the market demand; increasing diversity of the industrial products generates increasing demands. The definition of “health” by the capitalism economic mode is specialised in this process of producing and consuming. Hence the pursuit of “health” can find its explanation in the history of human development and the history of socioeconomic development, which allows us to explore the human nature from tiny clues, while taking a glimpse into the ethical care upon modern human survival.
Since human now increasingly draw attention to explore unknown experiments and existing practices, human might also challenge their primitive living state while consumer society continues to exist. This is a matter of survival, or rather, how to live a life, which leads to the artist’s interest in this cultural phenomenon and living condition. The artist therefore resembles more an information collector living in the present, reconstructing and resetting these information about contemporary mental condition and physical perception. In this project, some of the works mock contemporary people with a humorous remind; while some review such phenomenon with a perspective derived from human development, alongside with history of the body as well as social anticipation of the body. With reference to Nietzsche’s arguments upon the body and the will to power, this project deeply investigates the philosophical causes and practical methods of human’s pursuit of physical and mental well-being. Instead of an analysis, it is rather a reflection following an action, a question raised during a viewing. 



TINGWEI LI (*1989) is a young emerging artist, residing both in Berlin and Shanghai. She studied at Arts University (UdK) in Berlin, at Hunter College in New York and Tongji University in Shanghai. She was a residential artist at Pro Helvetia (Swiss Arts Council) in 2020 and was listed in Forbes “30 Under 30 China” in 2017. Prior to that Tingwei participated in residency programs at the Swatch Art Peace Hotel in Shanghai, Flux Factory in New York and Kooshk Residency in Iran.

2011 - 2017 Fine Arts, Absolventin & Meisterschülerin, Berlin University of the Arts. Berlin, Germany
2014- 2015 MFA program in Art Department, Hunter College of The City University of New York. NYC, USA 
2008 - 2010 Major in Photography and German, Tongji University. Shanghai, China

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