Cong Lingqi, b.1982, Shenyang, Liaoning, China
Date of birth
Place Of birth
Shenyang, Liaoning, China
Cong Lingqi was born in Shenyang, Liaoning Province in 1982. Her early talent was recognised when she was admitted to the highly competitive secondary school affiliated to the Lu Xun Academy of the Arts, and she continued in that institution as an undergraduate, being awarded her bachelor’s degree in 2005. Cong then studied at Beijing’s Central Academy of Fine Arts, graduating with an MFA in 2016. Her father was an electrician and a habitual tinkerer, and she recalls being happier helping him with handyman jobs than playing with her friends. That familiarity with tools and hardware shows in her early works, which often have a mechanical twist. For Dust (2008), she made tiny, brightly coloured replicas of 210 common objects as varied as a wok, a mosquito coil, a pair of pliers and an electric drill, and suspended them in the beam of a brilliant spotlight that casts their crowded shadows onto a moon-like circle on the wall. The aim was to translate things taken for granted into blurry images of fantasy, “just like a person’s memory”, Cong Lingqi explains. “The light, objects, shadows and reflection on the wall, everything was carefully planned so viewers will feel as if they’re dreaming and looking at their past.” Her work was shown in a solo exhibition, ‘To Avoid the Loss of Vision—Li Feng's Landscape of Fragrant Hills’ at Zendai MoMA, Shanghai in 2009. Selected group exhibitions include ‘Chinese Whispers: Recent Art from the Sigg and M+ Sigg Collections’, Kunstmuseum Bern, Zentrum Paul Klee, Bern, Switzerland (2016). Cong Lingqi lives and works in Beijing.