Born 1957, China

Cai Guo Qiang functions as an artist and as an inspired cultural mediator. His work, which includes drawings, installations and public performances often on a monumental scale and intensely interactive in nature, draws upon an array of ingredients which clustered together, form the basis of two essential oppositional categories: East and West.

Cai studied in Japan and is currently a resident of New York. He brings together in his life as well as his work, the melding of polarities that both characterise and enthuse him: - his home ambience is quintessentially Chinese. Food, fragrances and language bear testimony immediately to his continuing link with his origins. Yet his relatively recent Western context and New York life style set the scene for new perspectives: - cutting edge technologies, interactive computer control systems, synthetic materials and engineering feats.

Cai’s art, rooted in deep philosophical underpinnings, explodes into magical moments reaching out to people in many cultures and walks of life far beyond the specialised audiences that generally come into contact with Contemporary Art.

Ancient Chinese symbols such as the dragon, traditional materials such as handmade paper, gunpowder, herbs and mushrooms infuse his work with the spirit of his ancient and cultural roots, combining with the gyrations of high tech industry to create moments that remain etched in memory.

Interaction with his viewers is a key concept in all of Cai’s art. Energy flows between the artist, the artwork and the public. In his project for Extra Terrestrials, a series that spans diverse, related projects in worldwide locations, he includes the potential for extra terrestrials, by sending out sound and light systems into the galaxy.

1981–1985 Department of Stage Design, Shanghai Drama Institute,
1986–1995 Lived in Tokyo, Japan,
1995 Moved to New York
2004 Curator, BMoCA: Bunker Museum of Contemporary Art, Kinmen, Taiwan
2005 Curator, Virgin Garden: Emersion, China Pavilion, 51st Biennale Di
Venezia, Venice, Italy
Currently lives and works in New York

2006 Head On, Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin, Germany
2005 Tornado: Explosion Project for the Festival of China, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington DC
Curator of UMoCA exhibition by Jennifer Wen Ma: Aeolian Garden, Arte all'Arte, Arte Continua, Colla di Val d'Elsa, Italy
Life Beneath the Shadow, Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland
Paradise, The Zacheta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, Poland
Black Rainbow, Institut Valencia dâArt Modern, Valencia, Spain
On Black Fireworks, Institut Valencia dâArt Modern, Valencia, Spain
2004 Cai Guo-Qiang: Traveler, Freer & Sackler and Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institute, Washington DC, USA
Cai Guo-Qiang: Inopportune, MASS MoCA, North Adam, US
2003 Man, Eagle and Eye in the Sky: Kite Project for Siwa, Siwa, Egypt
Light Cycle: Explosion Project for Central Park, Creative Time, New York, US
Explosion Event: Light Cycle Over Central Park, Asia Society and Museum, New York, US
Ye Gong Hao Long: Explosion Project for Tate Modern, Tate Modern, London, UK
Cai Guo-Qiang: An Arbitrary History, S.M.A.K. Gent, Belgium Cai Guo-Qiang: For Your Pleasure Matrix 204, University of California Berkeley Art Museum, Berkeley, US
Pause: DMoCA Inaugural Exhibition with Kiki Smith, Niigata, Japan
2002 Cai Guo-Qiang: Ethereal Flowers, Galleria Civica di Arte Contemporanea di Trento, Italy
Transient Rainbow, Museum of Modern Art, New York, US
Cai Guo-Qiang's CHADO Pavilion-Homage to Tenshin Okakura, Hakone Open Air Museum, Hakone, Japan
Cai Guo-Qiang, Shanghai Art Museum, Shanghai, China
2001 An Arbitrary History, Musee d'art Contemporain Lyon, Lyon, France
Artistic Direction for APEC Cityscape Fireworks, Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation, Shanghai, China
UMoCA, Arte all' Arte, Arte Continua, Colla di Val d'Elsa, Italy
Performing Chinese Ink Painting, Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, Canada
Impression Oil Drawings, Charles H. Scott Gallery, Vancouver, Canada
2000 Ascending a Staircase. 69th Regiment Armory, New York, US
Project for Projects, Fondation Cartier pour I'are Contemporain, Paris, France
1999 I Am the Y2K Bug, Kunsthalle WiM Vienna, Austria
1998 No Construction, No Destruction. Bombing the Taiwan Museum of Art, Taiwan Museum of Art Taichung, Taiwan
Daydreaming, Cheung Piin Gallery, Taipei, Taiwan
1997 Cultural Melling Bath: Projecisfor the 20th Century, Queens Museum of Art, New York, US
Flying Dragon in the Heavens, Louisiana Museum of Modern AM Humblebaek, Denmark
1996 The Century with Mushroom Clouds – Project for the 20th Century, Nevada, Nuclear Test Site, Salt Lake, New York, US
1994 Chaos, Setagaya Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan
Concerning Flame, Tokyo Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
The Horizon from the Pan-Pacific, lwaki, Fukushima, Japan
From the Pan-Pacific, lwaki City Art Museum, Fukushima, Japan
Calendar of Life, Gallery APA, Nagoya, Japan
1993 Project to Extend the Great Wall of China by 10 000 Meters, Jiayuguan City, China
Long Mai (The Dragon Meridian), P3 art and environment, Tokyo, Japan
1992 Wailing Wall - From the Engine of Four Hundred Cars, IBM Kawasaki City Galley, Kawasaki, Japan
1991 Primeval Fireball: The Project for Projects, P3 art and environment Tokyo, Japan
1990 Works 1988/89, Osaka Contemporary Art Center, Osaka, Japan

2005 Made for This World, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, Australia
The Wall, Millennium Monument Art Museum, Beijing, China; University at Buffalo Art Galleries, Buffalo, New York, US
Quantum Grids, Sert Gallery, Carpenter Center for the Arts, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Translation, Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France
Can Buildings Curate, Storefront for Art and Architecture, New York, US
[My Private] Heros, MARTa Herford, Hergord, Germany
Trading Place, Taipei Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei, Taiwan
Universal Experience: Art, Life and the Tourist's Eye, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, US
Dreaming Now, The Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, US
2004 Past in Reverse, San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, US
Miramar Air Show, San Diego Museum of Art and Marine Corps Air Station, San Diego, US
26th Bienal Internacional Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil.
All Under Heaven, Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium
The Snow Show, Rovaniemi, Finland
International Film Festival Rotterdam: Exposing Cinema, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
2003 Drawing Show, University of Florida, Gainsville, Florida, US
The Heroic Century: The Museum of Modern Art Masterpieces, 200 Paintings and Sculptures, Museum of Fine Art, Houston, US
Alore, Chine? Centre Pompidou, Paris, France
Pulse, Art, Healing, and Transformation, The Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, US
Somewhere Better Than This Place, The Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati, US
2002 Ce Qui Arrive, Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain, Paris, France
The First Guangzhou Triennial. Reinterpretation:A Decade of Experimental Chinese Art, Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, China
3rd Biennale de Montreall-2002, Montreal, Canada
The Galleries Show, The Royal Academy of Art, London, UK
Magnet: Foreign Artists in Tuscany, Luigi Pecci Center for Contemporary Art, Pistoia, Italy
Tokachi International Contemporary Art Exhibition: Demeter, Obihiro, Japan
The Power of Art-The 2nd Inaugural Show of the Prefectural Museum of Art, The Prefectural Museum of Art, Hyogo, Kobe, Japan
Red Continent, Gwangju Art Museum, Gwangju, Korea
ev+ a 2002, Limerick City Gallery of Art, Limerick, Ireland
M Meeting, Zhejiang Library, Hangzhou, China
Art That Heals, Apexart Gallery, New York, US
Necessity of Relationship, Galleria Civica di Arte Contemporanea, Trento, Italy
Painting without Painting, Museum fur bildende Kunste, Leipzig, Germany
2001 Form Follows Fiction, Castello di Rivoli Museo d'Arte Contemporanea, Turin, Italy
Mega Wave, Yokohama 2001 International Triennale of Contemporary Art, Yokohama, Japan
Valencia de Bienale, Valencia, Spain
Project Refreshing, 49th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy
Locus/Focus, Sonsbeek 9, Arnhem, The Netherlands
Gift, Palazzo Papesse, Siena, Italy. Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, Arizona, US; The Bronx Museum of the Arts, Bronx, US
Visual environment for /Asunder, Yin Mei Dance, Danspace, St. Mark's Church, New York, US
2000 Shanghai Spirit, Shanghai Biennial, Shanghai Museum of Art, China
Open End-MoMA 2000, Museum of Modern Art, New York, US
media_city_seoul, Seoul Metropolitan Museum, Seoul, Korea
Echigo-Tasumari Art Triennial, Niigata, Japan
The Quite in the Land, Museu de Arte Moderna da Bahia, Salvador, Brazil
Sharing Exoticism, 5th Lyon Biennale of Contemporary Art, Lyon, France
Art/Unlimited/Basel/2000, Art/31/Basel, Basel, Switzerland
The Act of Resistance, Koldo Mitxelena Kulturunea, Donostia-San Sabastian, Spain
12th Biennale of Sydney 2000, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney
Over the Edges, SMAK, Gent, Belgium
2000 Biennial Exhibition, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, US
Outbound, Houston Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston, US
Wall, National Museum of History, Taiwan
Gratitude, Taiwan Museum of Art, Taiwan
Over the Edges, SMAK, Gent, Belgium
1999 Aperto over All, 48th Venice Biennale, Italy
Art-Worlds in Dialogue, Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany
Beyond The Future, The Third Asia-Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Brisbane, Australia
International Currents in Contemporary Art, Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain
Kunstwegen, Stadtische Galerie Nordhorn, Nordhom, Germany
Looking For A Place, The Third International Biennial, SITE Santa Fe, US
Opening S.M.A.K, Museum of Contemporary Art, Gent, Belgium
Panorama 2000, Centraal Museum Utrecht, Netherlands
Zeitwenden, Kunstrnuseum Bonn, Bonn, Germany
1998 Remanence, Melbourne Festival, Melbourne, Australia
Issey Miyake Making Things, Fondation Cartier pour I'art contemporain, Paris, France; ACE Gallery, New York, US (1999)
Crossings, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Canada
Inside Out: New Chinese Art, P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York, US; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art & Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, San Francisco, US (1999); MARCO, Monterey, Mexico (1999); Tacoma Art Museum and Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, US (1999)
Global Vision: New Art from the 90's part II, Deste Foundation, Athens, Greece
Taipei Biennial "Site of desire”, Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taipei, Taiwan
Where Heaven and Earth Meet, Art Museum of the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, NY, US
La Ville, le Jardin, la memoire: 1998, 2000, 1999, Academic de France a Rome, Rome, Italy (1999)
Wounds: Between Democracy and Redemption in Contemporary Art, Modema Museet Stockholm, Sweden
1997 Cities on the Move, Secession, Vienna, Austria (cat); Museum of Contemporary Art Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France; P.S. 1, New York, USA(1998); Louisiana Museum of Modern Aft, Humbleback, Denmark (1999); Hayward Gallery London, UK (I999); Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, Finland (I999)
On Life, Beauty, Translation, and Other Difficulties, 5th International Istanbul Biennial,Turkey
Future, Past, Present, 47th Venice Biennale, Italy
Performance Anxiety, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, US; Museum of
Contemporary Art San Diego, US.; SITE, Santa Fe, US
Promenade in Asia II, Shiscido Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
1996 The Hugo Boss Prize 1996, Guggenheim Museum Soho, New York, US
The Red Gate, Museum van Hedendaagse kunst, Gent, Belgium
Origins and Myths of Fire – New Art from Japan, China and Korea, The Museum of Modem Art Saitarna, Japan
Universolis, 23rd International Biennial of Sao Paulo, Brazil
Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, Australia
Between Heavens and Earth -Aspects of Contemporary Japanese Art II, Nagoya City Art Museum, Japan; Tamayo Museum, Mexico City, Mexico
In the Ruins of Twentieth Century, The Institute for Contemporary Art, P.S.1 Museum, New York, US
1995 Contemplation, The Ho-Am Museum, Seoul, Korea
Ripple Across the Water, Watarium Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, Japan
Transculture, 46th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy
Art in Japan Today 1985-1995, Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, Japan
The 1st Johannesburg Biennial, Johannesburg, South Africa
The 51st Scripps Ceramics Annual, Ruth Handler Williamson Gallery, Scripps College, US
1994 Heart of Darkness, Rijksmuseum Kruiler-Muller, Otterio, Holland
Creativity in Asian Art Now, Hiroshima City Museum, Hiroshima, Japan
Well Spring, Bath Festival Exhibition, Bath, UK
Open System, Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito, Japan
Making New Kyoto ‘94, Kyoto, Japan
Promenade in Asia, Shiseido Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
1993 Silent Energy, Museum of Modem Art, Oxford, UK
Outdoor Workshop '93, The Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park, Shigaraki, Japan
1992 Encountering the Others, The Kassel International Art Exhibition, Hann. Munden, Germany
Das Kunstwerk in Zelialeer Seiner Telekommunizerbarkeit, Vienna, Austria
Looking for Tree of Life, the Museum of Modern Art Sailama, Japan
1991 Exceptional Passages, Museum City Project, Fukuoka, Japan
1990 The 7th Japan Ushimado International Art Festival, Okayama, Japan
Chine Demain pour hier, Pourrieres, France (book) Museum City Tenjin '90, Fukuoka, Japan
1989 '89 Tama River Fussa Art Exhibition, Tokyo, Japan
1985 The Shanghai and Fujian Youth Modern Art Joint Exhibition, Fuzhou City Museum, Fujian, China
Wuyi-Shan Open Air Exhibition, Fujian, China

1995–96The Institute for Contemporary Art: The National and International Studio Program, Asian Cultural Council Grant New York
1993 Fondation Cartier pour I'art contemporain, Paris

1999 The Venice Biennial International Award, 48th Venice Biennale, Italy
1997 Oribe Awards, Gifu, Japan
1995 Benesse Prize, 46th Venice Biennale, Italy
Japan Cultural Design Prize, Tokyo, Japan

Cotter, Holland, ‘Playing to whoever In distant galaxies’, New York Times, 15 August 1997
Schwabsky, Barry, ‘Tao and physics: The art of Cai Guo-Qiang’, Artforum (New York), summer 1997, pp. 118-21, 155
Heartney, Eleanor, ‘Cai Guo-Qiang: Illuminating the New China’, Art in America (New York), May 2002, Cover, pp. 92-97
Itoi, Kay, ‘Making a splash’, Newsweek (New York), 9 October 2002, pp. 76–77
Cotter, Holland, ‘Public art both violent and gorgeous’, New York Times (New York), 14 September 2003
Tomkins, Calvin, ‘Light show-rocket's red glare’, New Yorker (New York) 15 September 2003, p. 40
Dawson, Jessica, Cai Guo-Qiang's ship has come in at Sackler’, The Washington Post (USA) 14 November 2004
Goodbody, Bridget, The peace process’, ArtReview (UK) November 2004, pp. 10, 90, 91, 104–107
Glueck, Grace, ‘The cars aren't really exploding, but the terrorist metaphor Is’, New York Times (USA) 18 February 2005, pp. E33, E39
Thomas, Daniel, ‘The Queensland Art Gallery and its Gallery of Modern Art’, Art Monthly Australia, no. 197, March 2007, pp. 18–23
Ian Driscoll, ‘Howard Farber: An unlikely collector sells’, Art AsiaPacific, no. 55, September–October 2007, pp. 104–05
Elaine W. Ng, ‘Summer heat on the block’, Art AsiaPacific, no. 55, September–October 2007, pp. 94–95

Harrison, Robert Pogue, ‘Of terror and tigers: Reflections on Cai Guo-Qiang's inopportune’, Cai Guo-Qiang: Inopportune. MoCA, North Adams, MASS, 2005, pp. 28–36
Heon, Laura, ‘Inopportune’, Cai Guo-Qiang: Inopportune, MoCA, North Adams, MASS, 2005, pp. 13–25

Fei Dawei, ‘To dare to accomplish nothing’, Cai Guo-Qiang, Thames & Hudson, London and Fondation Cartier pour l'art Contemporain, 2000, pp. 116-36
Ma, Jennifer Wen, ‘I wish it never happened’, Cai Guo-Qiang: Inopportune. MoCA, North Adams, MASS, 2005, pp. 54-–169
Ma, Jennifer Wen, ‘I wish it never happened’, in Cai Guo-Qiang. (ed.), Cai Guo-Qiang, Artist Publishing Co., Taiwan, 2005