Obituary: Huang Yong Ping died on October 20th
Art Business

Obituary: Huang Yong Ping died on October 20th

CREEPY CRAWLIES intrigued him. Beetles, centipedes, cockroaches, crickets, geckos, toads and snakes. The way they devoured each other while at the same time providing sustenance for their fellow creatures was symbolic of humans’ existence on Earth, he felt, and he poured them into “Theatre of the World”, one of his best-known works. Best of all were the snakes. Where the River Loire empties into the Bay of Biscay in his adopted France, you can see one of his colossal shimmering serpents emerge from the water as the tide recedes; at times it looks like a sea snake, at others an earthly reptile. He made one for the Shanghai Power Station of Art, and another for a show in Queensland, Australia. Both were skeletons of creatures big enough to have devoured others, yet it was their own flesh that had withered to nothing. In 2016 he made his biggest serpent yet, a 254-metre-long beast (pictured) that coiled and roiled over islands of sea containers stacked around the nave of the Grand Palais in Paris, its unhinged jaw open so wide it looked as if it could swallow the world. The chaos of power, the fragility of empires, the tottering precariousness […]

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