Play societies: wolves, lynx and ant

Hyundai Motorstudio Beijing, Beijing / China

June 16–September 9, 2020
July 13, 2020
Hyundai Motorstudio Beijing
Hyundai Motorstudio Beijing, E-1, 798 Road
798 Art Zone, Jiuxianqiao Road, Chaoyang District
100015 Beijing

T +86 10 5394 5200

Curator: Chen Min & Zhang Yehong (Winner of "Creativity" Hyundai Blue Prize 2019)

Artists: Angela Washko, Chen Baoyang, Chen Xin & Huang Yuwen, Lao Jiahui, Loopntale, Molleindustria, Nicky Case, Pied la biche, Tang Chao, Yao Qingmei, Zhang Wenxin, Zhao Bang, Zheng Da, Zhou Pengan  

The award-winning exhibition of the 2019 Hyundai Blue Prize—Play societies: wolves, lynx and ants had its grand opening on June 16, 2020 in the Hyundai Motorstudio Beijing. This exhibition is curated together by Chen Min & Zhang Yehong, who won the “Creativity” prize in the 2019 Hyundai Blue Prize .

Since its establishment in 2017, the Hyundai Blue Prize, hosted by Hyundai Motor Company, has always been pursuing the vision of cross-border sharing, national innovation and enjoying life. It sparks a public discussion on art, innovation and technology, while bringing the public closer to the emerging art ecology. The Hyundai Blue Prize serves as a foothold for outstanding young curators to step onto the world stage and stands as a vanguard of supporting young curators in China.

The exhibition aims to take audiences on a journey from the time when personal computers just became ubiquitous, through the beginning of the Internet in the 1990s to the current era of smart devices, thereby exploring contemporary social interaction/social intelligence issues. The exhibition uses play as an act and a medium, asking the question whether we can imagine a kind of "pan-intelligence" that combines human, animal and artificial intelligences.

The curators state, “Playing is an instinctive act for animals and humans alike, and is the method as well as the medium of this exhibition. As Johan Huizinga once wrote, play predates culture and society; civilization arises in and as play. But what we have seen today is screens reducing desires into symbols and signs, game rules taking the place of intuition, data replacing the individuals, and algorithms eliminating chance. By constantly revising and iterating the rules inherent in collective plays, artists hope to introduce an incalculable quality to different communities and society overall, so that play and games will no longer be dominated by rules of competition and conflict, but filled with purer liquidity and spontaneity. At the same time, play is undoubtedly sociable; even “players” in the “console games” can talk to the creator (the game designer) through the game’s interface. Group plays help humans to explore the rules of how the world works, learn from each other and achieve unity through group collaboration.”  

The three animals—wolves, lynx and ants—which symbolically represent the human society are shown through the different developmental stages of media technology, revealing the contradictions between the interconnected society and individuals. Meanwhile, “superhighway,” “refuge island,” and “arcade” are taken as cues for the overall scenography design. The exhibition is composed of artworks by 14 artists and game designers both from mainland China and abroad, and of different interpretative forms, such as moving images, drawing, multimedia interactive installations, video games and other forms of interaction to show the concept of “play.”

Cornelia Schneider, the head of Global Experiential Marketing, mentioned “This exhibition will display many artworks with deep interaction and collective participation among audiences who can play, watch, or even do both simultaneously to experience the interactive electronic games designed by the artists.”

Meanwhile, to control the number of visitors attending the offline exhibition amid current travel restriction, Hyundai Motorstudio Beijing has launched a virtual reality exhibition that overcomes the limitations of time and space.   

For more information about the Hyundai Motorstudio Beijing, please visit