Born in 1980 in Gansu, CHina.
Mixing installation and video-art, Zhang is quickly emerging as one of the most provocative and intriguing of China’s new generation of artists. Unapologetically voyeuristic, Zhang’s installation ”Pry” (2005-ongoing) explores the relationship between the viewer and the viewed, superiority and inferiority, exploiter and exploited. This is done with rare sensitivity and non-judgmental loyalty towards featured destinies, all of which share a common denominator of difference. These differences are manifested sexually, religiously and politically, and often with severe consequences to the protagonists. The installation, which also incorporates photographs, belongs to the tradition of socially conscious documentary film. Zhang Ding’s interest in the personal stories of anonymous individuals can be seen in his archival project on missing persons. Here, he appropriates the visual imagery of missing people by photographing missing person flyers, often spotted in nearby public spaces. He paradoxically stresses the uncertainty while manifesting the image of the lost person through a second representation. It is an archival impulse that reveals an interest in memory, loss and personal narratives.