An image of an everyday train ride unfolds slowly but clearly in front of our eyes. It becomes a journey to an autonomous universe – a depiction of our reality, created from the artist’s meticulous perception and intricate sensibilities. Dan Zhu offers the viewer an insight into her most inner and intimate understanding of the world. She draws inspiration from her early childhood, utilizing memories of carefree enjoyment to create and immerse us in her own imagination. In her works, Zhu explores the experience of time through different journeys of the mind, which grants her access to an unlimited amount of ideas, as the mind knows no limits, and holds infinite space.
With an affectionate eye for her surroundings, Zhu records her daily settings. The minute details of her reality inspire her works, which can be described as ambient studies of environment and emotions. These images are containers and structures that allow us to access her paranormal perception filled with characters, or 'beings', which include floating bubbles from a drink on the train, autumn leaves fraught with existential conflict, and a blue-faced moon. Her pieces are expressions of the inner stirrings of an astute and imaginative observer, representing a sensitivity to the tension between spirit and body, as well as her mental and physical relations to both time and space.