Ce Jian’s works deal with the physicality of bodies and the illusionism in their representation. She draws on historical pictorial traditions and reformulates them in the context of a contemporary digital visuality. In doing so, she explores the artificial structure and aesthetics of the technically transformed body, be it a human figure or an object, using different approaches to highlight the role of distortion and hybridisation. 

Seeing painting as a historically rich medium in which both knowledge and emotions are encoded, Ce Jian aims for a visual language that reflects the complexity of today’s image worlds. Throughout her practice she emphasises the dual existence of painting as a material body and a virtual window. Set in a compositional framework, her paintings unfold their own physicality through the texture of their layered surface, which combines clear geometry with expressive gestures and colour fields with delicate drawings.

In her recent works, Ce Jian constructs hybrid figures inspired by mythological beasts from European culture. The fantastic creatures are modelled on the anatomy of industrial robots, merging the technical components with elements from art history and natural history. With metamorphic fluidity, Ce Jian explores the boundaries between the human and non-human, the biological and mechanical. Her focus lies especially on the gendered concept of monstrosity both in classical mythology and modern technology, where the sphinx and the cyborg meet in their role as threatening (demonic) females, defined by their powerful composite bodies and uncanny intelligence. The connecting arc between history and futurism runs like a constant through her work.


Ce Jian was born in 1984 in Shandong/China and emigrated to Germany in 1988. She studied fine arts with Georg Baselitz, Daniel Richter and Robert Lucander at the Berlin University of the Arts, where she graduated as Meisterschueler in 2008. She also studied art history, philosophy and East Asian art history at the Humboldt University and Freie Universität Berlin, obtaining a M.A. (Magister Artium) degree in 2009. She received a Ph.D. in art and visual history from the Humboldt University in 2017, with a scholarship from the Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes.

She currently lives and works in Berlin.


Solo Exhibitions 

  • 2023
    Belly of the Beast, White Space, Beijing, China
  • 2021
    Paradise, White Space, Beijing, China
  • 2019
    Words of Art, Ce Jian & Yuzheng Cheng, Yell Space, Shanghai, China
  • 2018
    Armada, White Space, Beijing, China
    On Paper 2, Zapbeijing, Beijing, China
    Bannermen, Gallery SU:, Seoul, Korea
  • 2017
    Transeuropa, Ce Jian & Yuzheng Cheng, Whiteconcepts, Berlin, Germany
    CAPTCHA, Philine Cremer Gallery, Dusseldorf, Germany
  • 2016
    The Grand Illusion, White Space, Beijing, China
    Elephant, NON Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  • 2015
    Velum, Philine Cremer Gallery, Dusseldorf, Germany
  • 2014
    Projection, White Space, Beijing, China
    Frontiers, Philine Cremer Gallery, Dusseldorf, Germany
    Tangram, Galerie Herold, Bremen, Germany
  • 2012
    Smile Without A Face, White Space, Beijing, China
    A Maze, Galerija Contra, Koper, Slovenia
  • 2011
    The Maker, Alexander Ochs Galleries, Berlin, Germany
    Models, Galerija Contra, Koper, Slovenia
  • 2010
    Fact=Fiction, White Space, Beijing, China
    Marco Polo. A Travel Guide, Andrew James Art, Shanghai, China
  • 2009
    1 für ALLE, Läkemäker Gallery, Berlin, Germany
  • 2008
    Wie Sie sehen…, Läkemäker Gallery, Berlin, Germany

Selected Group Exhibitions

  • 2024
    Returning to the Sea, TAG Art Museum, Qingdao, China
    Worlds Beyond, Unit London, UK
  • 2023
    From the Other Hill, Guardian Art Center, Beijing, China
    Form and Meaning, Yuan Art Museum, Beijing, China
    From Body to Dream, Braverman Gallery, Tel Aviv, Israel
    Painting Unsettled, UCCA Edge, Shanghai, China
  • 2022
    The Situation is Excellent, Glue, Berlin, Germany
    Persona and Parasite, White Space, Beijing, China
    The Hearing Trumpet: Part 1, Galerie Marguo, Paris, France
  • 2021
    Parallel Universes – Parafacts and Parafictions, designrepublic, Shanghai, China
    Chengdu Biennale, Chengdu, China
    Futurism of the Past, Beijing Contemporary Art Expo, Beijing, China
    Sonderlage, Lage Egal, Berlin, Germany
  • 2020
    El Lissitzky’s Rooms, Surplus Space, Wuhan, China
  • 2019
    A White Space Odyssey, White Space, Beijing, China
    Kunstraum Berlin, German Embassy, Beijing, Germany
    Yellow Reflection, Galerie Liusa Wang, Paris, France
    The X / Part 1, Whiteconcepts, Berlin, Germany
  • 2018
    Art Patrons, Qiao Space, Shanghai, China
    A World in a Grain of Sand, Fosun Foundation Collection, Sanya, China
    Remixing Ground: Deconstructing Damage, La Chapelle de Clairefontaine, France
  • 2017
    The Second Self, Peres Projects, Berlin, Germany
    The 6th Art Sanya / Huayu Youth Award 2017, Sanya, China
    On Paper One, Zapbeijing, Beijing, China
    I’m not a robot, Ce Jian & Lin Ke, Philine Cremer Gallery, Dusseldorf, Germany
  • 2016
    Our Painting, Yang Art Museum, Beijing, China
    Painting As Straight Gate, Hive Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China
    New Capitalism, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chengdu, China
    B-Movie, J:Gallery, Shanghai, China
  • 2015
    Saloon, Sexauer Gallery, Berlin, Germany
  • 2014
    Painting Lesson IV, Yang Gallery, Beijing, China
  • 2013
    Aufwachen! Besser machen!, Kleine Humboldt-Galerie, Berlin, Germany


Studio Ce Jian
Kurfürstenstraße 15-16
10785 Berlin, Germany



Studio Ce Jian
Kurfürstenstraße 15-16
10785 Berlin