Gold Mountain Collection
72 in HIGH x 108 in WIDE
(182.88 cm HIGH x 274.32 cm WIDE)
Partial Art Acquisition Fund Purchase

Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, "On Gold Mountain: Sculptures from the Sierra by Zhan Wang," February 15 - May 25, 2008 (104 pg catalogue).

Mixed media installation consisting of 48 Sierra Nevada ore rocks and 48 stainless steel rocks. The stainless steel rocks are created by exerting pressure on metal sheets wrapped around the ore rocks. These metal sheets are joined together to create a hollow duplicate of each ore rock. During this process, the ore rocks are marked with red felt pen, which is visible in the installation. Dimensions and installation variable.

Gold Mountain Collection has been installed on a combination of ledges and on the floor at the Asian Art Museum for "On Gold Mountain: Sculptures from the Sierra by Zhan Wang" and on the floor in the Haines Gallery II space. Excerpt, email from Lisa Lindenbaum to Rene de Guzman, Jan. 13, 2010:"In the Gold Mountain works, Zhan Wang pairs a group of Sierra Nevada rocks and their stainless steel counterparts. This is Zhan Wang's version of the California gold rush, in which the Sierra rocks recently mined by the artist represent what the Chinese miners sought in San Francisco, or Old Gold Mountain. By placing a sheet of stainless steel over a rock and exerting pressure, Zhan Wang creates an impression of the texture of the rock in the stainless steel. He then joins these sheets together to recreate the original rock form. The resulting stainless steel rocks, instead of containing the feverishly hoped for gold, are hollow. Zhan Wang's "Gold Mountain" uses ersatz gold (stainless steel) to explore the artist's concerns about illusion, false hope, and matter.Excerpt from "Rocks Into Gold, Zhan Wang: Sculptures from the Sierra": "Before wrapping steel around them, the artist's assistants 'map' each stone's surface with red felt-tip pens, as if fitting the stone with a new suit. Those markings remain on the stone, underscoring for the viewer the contrast between industrial processes of manufacture (math, engineering, the processing of raw materials) and the experience of aesthetic contemplations. The real rock functions like an idea or a drawing for the artificial rock. In turn, the artificial rock - with its fluid contours and buffered surfaces - resolves all the cracks, scars and natural imperfections of the Sierra rock from which it was cast. We are offered an ideal. As a pair, the sculpture - both raw material and finished product - embodies the beginning and the end of itself. By handcrafting doubles of California ricks in China using a modern industrial material, and by returning those rocks and their doubles to California, Zhan Wang echoes the journey of his ancestors to the Sierra."

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