He An

Associated person(s)
URLsArtist's page
Document Portfolio & CV
Document CV

Artist in residence2004Arts-in-residenceChinese Arts CenterManchester, UK

Solo exhibition2019Jade BranchTang Contemporary ArtBeijing, China
Solo exhibition2017Yang Art MuseumBeijing, China
Group exhibition2016China OverpopYuz MuseumShanghai, China
Group exhibition2016Community of CelibatesShanghai Gallery of ArtShanghai, China
Solo exhibition2014Wind Light as a ThiefGalerie Daniel TemplonBrussels, Belgium
Solo exhibition2012Who is alone now will stay alone foreverTOP Contemporary Art CenterShangai, China
Group exhibition2012Neon. Who’safraid of red, yellow and blue?Maison Rouge, Antoine de Galbert FoundationParis, France
Solo exhibition2011He An Solo ShowGalerie Daniel TemplonParis, France
Group exhibition2011Remote Ten Years of White Rabbit—Contemporary Chinese Art CollectionWhite Rabbit MuseumSydney, Australia
Solo exhibition2009What Makes Me Understand What I KnowUCCABeijing, China
Group exhibition2005After 1970sBeijing Today Art MuseumBeijing, China
Solo exhibition2003HE ANChinese Arts CenterManchester, UK
Group exhibition2003DistanceThe Guangdong Museum of ArtsGuangzhou, China
Group exhibition2000LovelyModern MuseumBeijing, China



Wuhan, China
Graduated from the Oil Painting Department of the Hubei Academy of Fine Arts



Wuhan, China


Places of residence

Beijing, China

He An lives and works in Beijing. He An is part of an emerging generation of artists born after China’s Cultural Revolution who are making work in the midst of an enormous industrial expansion. His work largely deals with the physical and psychological atmosphere of China’s growing cities, especially the signs, lights, and language that populate the built environment. 

His light sculptures are made up of characters stolen – with the complicity of the local mafia – from the signs that light up his native city of Wuhan. Using these stolen ideograms, which are often damaged, the artist recreates the names of people who are dear to him. He An's work is autobiographic and obsessive, straddling the line between illegality and investigation and exploring the prohibitions and taboos of contemporary Chinese culture.

He An broke into contemporary culture in 2000 with the statement “I miss you, please contact me” in his work of the same title. The work combined public space with private desire, contemporary discourse with unmediated human communication. It cracked open a crevice where people could peer beyond their jobs, relationships, and commercial urban stress to see something strange but beautifully simple. It was emotional without strings attached, and consequently people contacted him from all over China. The deceptive simplicity of this work, its romantic theatricality, plus its desire to reach between the public and private has defined He An’s practice even since.

https://www.tangcontemporary.com/he-an (21.07.2020)


Do You Think You Can Help Her Brother? photo Do You Think You Can Help Her Brother? 2009 He An 
Miss You, Please Contact Me photo Miss You, Please Contact Me 2000 He An