This multidisciplinary exhibition integrates painting, sculpture, installation, photography, video, poetry, sociology, biology, documentary, and public service advertising into a new form of visual analysis from a cross-cultural and multi-dimensional perspective – it interprets and promotes the coexistence of sharks and humans as well as sharks and marine life, from various angles and in different ways. Here are just a small selection of works featured.
GAO XIAOWU - Evolution, 328 × 183 × 179 cm, Stainless steel, 2014
The title refers to rebirth and metamorphosis, alluding to the transformation of society through industrialisation and technology that the artist sees as artificial, an evolution against nature.
LIU ZINING - Red, Triptych, 190 x190 cm, oil on canvas, 2018
Magnified, every fleck of colour and shadow is depicted in vivid detail, and the viewer's image is reflected in the shiny surface, placing them at the centre of the work.
CHEN WENLING - Symbiosis, 133 × 150 × 70 cm, 42 × 20 × 15 cm, Stainless steel, lacquer, 2017
Sharks are one of the most ancient animals and they have been on Earth for about 500 million years. However, because of human activity, in the past decades they are facing the risk of extinction.
LI HUI - Nirvana – Shark, 230 × 550 × 260 cm, Stainless steel, lacquer, 2014
‘When the buying stops, the killing can too’. Through this artwork, the artist hopes that sharks, subject to suffering to the point that they are at risk of extinction, can free themselves from the endless cycle of death and rebirth.
HOU CHUNGYING - This is Not Food, Nor is this a Dessert, 194 × 291 cm, Oil on canvas, wooden board, 2015
By representing the shark as an appetising dessert in unnatural colours, the artist has also highlighted the risk of food contamination posed by water pollution.
LI JIWEI - Don't Copy II, Free measurements, Plastic, propylene, stainless steel, dynamo, lighting, 2015
Made up of more than 70 pieces of transparent material, the four-metre-long sculpture is suspended in mid-air and illuminated with X-rays.
MARK LEONG - The Harvest, 100 × 80 cm, Documentary photographic essay, 2010
Covering Asia's multi-billion dollar wildlife trade for National Geographic, Leong travelled to ten different countries over a three year period.
XIA HANG - To Poseidon, 280 × 600 × 280 cm, Steel, 2014
In this steel sculpture, the shark is portrayed as a war ship, a soldier of Poseidon, strong and resistant to attack.
ZHENG LU - Butterfly in Love with Flower, 830 × 1086 × 326 cm, Stainless steel, 2017
The artwork, composed of stainless steel wires welded together, is characterised by a distinctive 'bubble' structure. It symbolises something transient and evanescent, which is about to dissolve.
ZOU LIANG, Swimming, 366 × 162 × 254 cm, Stainless steel, 2014
The hollow shark structure, made from highly polished stainless steel, contains a bright light, casting a complex shadow onto the surrounding walls, like a vast shoal of fish.
GUYKUDA MUNUNGGURR - Mäna the hammerhead shark, 200 x 75 x 40 cm, Earth pigments (ochres) on wood, 2018. ANMM COLLECTION: 00055317
The shark is known by the Yolnu word Mäna. Mäna the Shark Ancestor bestowed the Wandawuy homeland to the Djapu clan and defined them as Shark People.
CHARLIE YIRRAWALA - Shark, 22 x 82 x 17.5 cm, Earth pigments (ochres) on wood, 1989. ANMM Collection 00015639 Gift from Garry Anderson © Charles Yirrawala/Copyright Agency, 2018
His carved sculptures document his connections to his clan and the lands to the east of the coast on the Arafura Sea. The shark is an important totem of the people who belong to this coastal community.