Zhipeng Tan is a fascinating Chinese master artisan, plastic artist, and designer that dedicates his life to the ancient and endangered technique of lost-wax casting. With an inclination for gold, his contemporary art features motifs that vary from environmental to figurative art.
Zhipeng Tan’s practice, since graduating from the China Academy of Art, has been focused on the ancient technique of lost-wax casting. This ancient foundry process has created an intersection between Tan’s interest in heritage casting techniques and organic forms, all shown through his contemporary art.
The modern art forms designed by Tan vary from being environmental (water drops, tree roots) to being figurative art (spinal cords, pelvic structures). The Lily collection brings together the botanical and human motifs most explicitly. In Tan’s contemporary art, the tension between the two references causes the works to become abstracted and take on a slightly surreal quality, whilst maintaining functionality in his furniture design.
The 33 Step chair is the most visceral work to come of out Tan’s studio. There are 33 vertebrae in a human spine, hence the name for this decorative art chair that inverts the body and places the cervical vertebrae on the floor and the pelvis as the seat.
The pelvis seat motivates us to think about this central part of the human skeletal structure. The fulcrum between the spine and the legs, the ‘basket’ of female reproductive organs, the space we all pass through. The gold colour of the contemporary art chair makes it appear somewhere between a classical sculpture, a Rorschach Test, and a functional piece of art furniture.
Zhipeng Tan’s practice continues to focus on the intersection between the craft of lost-wax casting and the creation of organic forms, at once thought-provoking and beautiful. Gallery All is the commissioning gallery of Zhipeng Tan’s edition works.