He Chengyao (China)
He Chengyao is part of the radical Chinese Performance Arts scene. She breaks through socially rehearsed boundaries: In "Kiss," she invites visitors to suck a lolly with her, and the further they go, the more intimate the situation becomes … "Auction of the Soul" (on 15.06.) auctions a performance dating from 2006. In contrast to the days when He Chengyao offered her metre-long hair to the highest bidder back– an ambiguous gesture at a time when sales of contemporary Chinese artworks were booming – she has now decided to sell a different part of herself: her soul.
He Chengyao is very controversial in China, her home country, especially for displaying her naked body in her early works. She believes that the differences and debates she has with this highly expressive society were inspired by her mother: ‘If I hadn’t had a mentally ill mother who used her madness to be free I might never have become an artist.’