We chat with artist Xu Di whose show “[Vivid as Fruit”](http://www.cityweekend.com.cn/shanghai/events/72328/) is currently on at [Vanguard Gallery](http://www.cityweekend.com.cn/shanghai/listings/art/galleries/has/vanguard-gallery/).
You're an eighties baby. How do you think this affects your work?
It doesn’t affect my work at all.
What made you interested in working with seafood?
It is because of my cognition about the world. Seafood has the specialty of consumption. There’s certain proportion of values to prices of most goods. Gold is expensive. But gold has great value itself. In this case, seafood is expensive temporarily. It’s hard to be stored. No matter how expensive it is, the next day it’s worth nothing when it’s gone bad. This specialty aroused my interest. It’s like emotion, fame, or principle, that comes and goes and can easily break.
Do you eat fish?
I’m a Buddhist. I was a vegetarian for a year. It was like a ceremony. For that year I didn’t eat fish, but now I do. My works aren’t concerned with my belief or living habits. Working on art is like engaging in learning.
What other materials do you enjoy working with?
I’ve been working only with seafood recently. In the future I’ve thought about paper folding for pictures or sculptures, and crimes for videos.
What inspires you?
Inspiration doesn’t automatically come. I observe the world around me. My insight brings about the inspiration. I live in a city nowhere close to the sea. But I can still know about seafood – its specialties and price fluctuation. It stands for instability and transience.
How's the art scene in Shanghai these days?
In comparison, Shanghai has is less inclusive than Beijing. We can have the most ridiculous exhibitions in Beijing, which can be hardly allowed in Shanghai, but people in Shanghai work more earnestly.
And how did you get involved with Vanguard Gallery?
I met someone from Vanguard Gallery at my exhibition in Beijing more than a year ago. He appreciated my work so we get in touch.
What: Xu Di's "[Vivid as Fruit](http://www.cityweekend.com.cn/shanghai/events/72328/)"
When: September 3 - October 10, 2010
Where: [Vanguard Gallery](http://www.cityweekend.com.cn/shanghai/listings/art/galleries/has/vanguard-gallery/) | Room 204, Bldg 4A, 50 Moganshan Lu
Tel: 5252-2551, 6299-3523