Zhan Rui’s new painting series “7278” comprises 12 pieces of canvas works sized at 175*95cm. Each piece represents one calendar month. The information on canvas came from the artist’s fixed monthly income, which is 7278 Yuan in Chinese currency. The structure of composition is made of ten 15.7*7.7cm squares both horizontally and vertically. 15.7*7.7cm is the actually size of an 100 Yuan note. The artist fills up those squares with the size of 7278 Yuan (the calculation method goes: 100 Yuan note = 15.7*7.7cm; 50 Yuan note = 15*7cm; 20 Yuan note = 14.5*7cm; 5 Yuan note = 13.5*6.3cm; 1 Yuan note = 13*3cm) to satisfy the total amount of 7278 Yuan. The main frame of each canvas was used 12 times. The colour and filling patterns are different for every month. The four sides of the frame is taken as a part of the art work, as the overall frame structure stretched out to four sides fully.
Zhan Rui’s creation may involve questions such as: “what is art”; “production mechanism”; “visual structure” and “time”. The sense of time in Zhan Rui’s works may be referred to the past; or the present; or even the future. The concept of “waiting” is also in them at the same time. Zhan Rui pays more attention to rationality and controllability in his creative work. He prefers to analyse and judge towards specific problems instead of relying too much on perception and contingency. From the visual level, Zhan Rui’s work could be regarded as the abstract, because his work appears with this layer of abstraction skin or shell. But he neither pays attention to the pure beauty of the abstract nor the metaphysical assumption of the traditional abstraction. He is in fact interested only in the mechanism of production.