Cocon du Vide


Chinese abacus and Buddhist rosary beads, chinese chair, metal

109.5 × 90 × 185 cm (43 1/8 × 35 7/16 × 72 13/16 in.)

Cocon du vide (Empty Cocoon), an assemblage of Buddhist rosaries, Chinese shields and brass bells, looks like a chrysalis or a silk cocoon. Despite the void implied by the title, a metamorphosis seems to be underway. Transcendence from one state to another is possible.

Talking about his work, Zhen Chen (1955-2000) often referenced the notion of “transexperience”: the process by which an individual is marked by the fusion of different social and cultural influences, but still able to transcend their impact, moving beyond their environment. Building on these influences, at a crossroads between traditional Chinese thought and the Western avant-garde, and with a passion for medicine, his research often focuses on the processes of mediation and healing.

Cocon du vide, part of the Pinault Collection, was shown at the exhibition "Eloge du Doute" (“In Praise of Doubt”) at the Punta della Dogana in Venice (2011-2013) and then in 2017 at the “Faire avec” (“Make do with”) exhibition at Chapelle Laënnec in Paris.