We, DATEAGLE ART (with ‘we’, ‘our’ or ‘us’ being interpreted accordingly) are committed to protecting your privacy and personal information. We operate our website (the “Site“). This policy applies to information held about all persons about whom DATEAGLE ART holds information.  By ‘information,’ we mean personal information about you that we collect, use, share and store.


This Privacy Policy statement explains our data processing practices. By using our website or by providing any personal information to DATEAGLE ART, you consent to the collection and use of your personal information as set out in this statement. This Privacy Policy also provides information on your legal rights in relation to your Personal Data.


Last Updated 9th June 2019





We collect and process your Personal Data in accordance with applicable laws that regulate data protection and privacy. This includes, without limitation, the EU General Data Protection Regulation (2016/679) (‘GDPR’) and the UK Data Protection Act 2018 (‘DPA’) together with other applicable UK and EU laws that regulate the collection, processing and privacy of your Personal Data (together, ‘Data Protection Law’).





3.1 We may collect and store the following types of information about you when you use the Site or by corresponding with us (for example, by e-mail). This includes information you provide when registering to use the Site or sharing any data via our social media functions. The Personal Data about you that we collect and use includes the following:


(a) Your name;

(b) Your contact information such as your address, email address, telephone number, billing address and delivery address (if applicable);

(c) If applicable, your payment details/ financial data;

(d) Information from accounts you link to us (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram);

(e) Information in relation to your purchase of our products in our shop or use of our services;

(f) Information about your personal preferences;

(g) Information related to your attendance of, and interest in, DATEAGLE ART’S exhibitions, events, artists, artworks, and services.


3.2 Please note that if you do not provide Personal Data when we ask for it, it may delay or prevent us from providing products or services to you.





4.1 We collect most of this Personal Data directly from you – in person, by email, telephone, post, through our social media, and via our website e.g. when you contact us with a query, make a purchase of any of our products or services, or ask that you are added to our mailing list. However we may also collect Personal Data from from articles or other information that has been published about you in the media.





5.1 Please ensure that any Personal Data you supply to us which relates to third party individuals is provided to us with their knowledge of our proposed use of their Personal Data.





6.1 Under Data Protection Law, we can only use your Personal Data if we have a proper reason for doing so e.g.:


(a) To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations;

(b) For the performance of a contract between us or to take steps at your request before entering into a contract;

(c) For our legitimate interests or those of a third party (where we have a business or commercial reason to use your Personal Data, so long as this is not overridden by your own rights and interests, including ensuring the successful continuing our business operations, updating our client and contact records, improving our offerings, marketing our offerings and preventing fraud);

(d) Where you have given consent.


6.2 If we process sensitive data as referred to above we will only do this with your explicit consent; or, to protect your vital interests (or those of someone else) in an emergency; or, where you have already publicised such information; or, where we need to use such sensitive data in connection with a legal claim that we have or may be subject to.


6.3 We may use your Personal Data for one or more of the following purposes:


(a) To fulfil requests, including providing products or services to you;

(b) Maintaining business operations, including updating client and visitor records, identifying areas for operational improvement, such as improving efficiency, training and quality control, getting to know you and your preferences in order to provide you with a more tailored service;

(c) Marketing, including adding you to our mailing list and providing you with direct marketing communications about what we are doing as well as products, services and/or events which may be of interest to you by post or phone. If required under applicable law, where we contact you by SMS, email, fax, social media and/or any other electronic communication channels for direct marketing purposes, this will be subject to you providing your express consent. You can object or withdraw your consent to receiving direct marketing from us at any time, by contacting us at;

(d) To enforce and/or defend any of our legal claims or rights;

(e) For any other purpose required by applicable law, regulation, the order of any court or regulatory authority.





7.1 Except as expressly set out in this policy we will not sell, distribute or lease your personal information to third parties unless we have your permission or are required by law to do so. We will only share your Personal Data as set out in this section 7, including sharing with:


(a) Third parties we use to help deliver our products and services to you, e.g. payment service providers and delivery and shipping companies;

(c) Other third parties we use to help us run our business;

(d) Third parties approved by you, e.g. social media accounts you choose to link your account with us to.


7.2 We only allow our service providers to handle your Personal Data if we are satisfied they take appropriate measures to protect your Personal Data. We also impose contractual obligations on service providers to ensure they can only use your Personal Data to provide services to us and to you.


7.3 We may also share personal information with external auditors in relation to the audit of our accounts, and we may disclose and exchange information with law enforcement agencies and regulatory bodies without telling you to comply with our legal and regulatory obligations if we are required by law to do so.


7.4 We may also need to share some Personal Data with other parties, such as potential buyers of some or all of our business or during a re-structuring. Usually, information will be anonymised but this may not always be possible. The recipient of the information will be bound by confidentiality obligations.


7.5 We may also need to share some Personal Data with other business entities – should we plan to merge with or be acquired by that business entity, or if we undergo a re-organisation with that entity.





8.1 A cookie is a text file that downloads small bits of information to your device.  Our website doesn’t uses cookies, however our Site may contain links to other websites who do, including via our social media buttons.


8.2 Our website may contain links to other websites of interests. While we try to link only to website that share our respect for privacy, we are not responsible for the content, security, or privacy practices employed by other websites, and a link does not constitute an endorsement of that website. Once you link to another website from our Site, you are subject to the terms and conditions of that website, including, but not limited to, its Internet privacy policy and practices. Please check these policies before you submit any data to these websites.





9.1 DATEAGLE ART only retains Personal Data identifying you for as long as you have a relationship with us, as is necessary to perform our obligations to you (or to enforce or defend contract claims), or as is required by applicable law. This will involve us periodically reviewing our files to check that information is accurate, up-to-date and still required.


9.2 Personal Data we no longer need is securely disposed of and/or anonymised so you can no longer be identified from it.





10.1 We endeavour to take all reasonable steps to protect Personal Data from external threats such as malicious software or hacking. However, please be aware that there are always inherent risks in sending information by public networks or using public computers and we cannot 100% guarantee the security of all data sent to us (including Personal Data).





11.1 In accordance with your legal rights under applicable law, you have a ‘subject access request’ right under which you can request information about the Personal Data that we hold about you, what we use that Personal Data for and who it may be disclosed to as well as certain other information. Usually, we will have a month to respond to such a subject access request.


11.2 Under Data Protection Law you also have the following rights, which are exercisable by making a request to us in writing:


(a) To request access to or a copy of any Personal Data which we hold about you;

(b) That we rectify Personal Data that we hold about you which is inaccurate or incomplete;

(c) That we erase your Personal Data without undue delay if we no longer need to hold or process it;

(d) To object to any automated processing that we carry out in relation to your Personal Data;

(e) To object to our use of your Personal Data for direct marketing;

(f) To object and/or to restrict the use of your Personal Data for purpose other than those set out above unless we have a legitimate reason for continuing to use it;

(g) That we transfer Personal Data to another party where the Personal Data has been collected with your consent or is being used to perform contact with you and is being carried out by automated means.


11.3 Any request from you for access to or a copy of your Personal Data must be in writing, and we will endeavour to respond within a reasonable period and in any event within one month in compliance with data protection legislation. We will comply with our legal obligations as regards your rights as a data subject. If you would like to exercise any of the rights set out above, please contact us at the address below.





We operate in accordance with current UK and EU data protection legislation. If you have any concerns about our use of your information, you also have the right (as a UK resident) to make a complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), which regulates and supervises the use of personal data in the UK, via their helpline on 0303 123 1113 – see





13.1 Our Privacy Policy may be subject to change at any time. Any changes we make to our policy in the future will be posted on this page and, where appropriate, notified to you by e-mail. Please check back frequently to see any updates or changes to our policy.





If you have any requests regarding this Privacy Policy or wish to make a further request relating to how we use your Personal Data as described above, please contact our Data Protection Manager by e-mail at

Creating a personal ecology of motifs.

In the Bow neighbourhood within East London, artist Vivien Zhang addresses notions of being ‘digital-native’, ‘trans-border’ and ‘placeless-ness’ in her work, navigating the boundary-less- ness of these terms through the medium of painting. Oscillating between the controlled restriction and the ability to let loose (with layers of illusions, tricks, and fantasies), her body of work is very physical, marking a relationship to the human body and to natural forces.Tackling current issues around technology, the digital information age, our emotions and behaviour today, the paintings demonstrate her ability to captivate across contradictory tones through the use of numerous motifs that cross contexts. Pillars, pixels, stickers, cells or chromosomes are just some examples of these motifs and in almost all cases, they possess a duality – they take on multiple interpretations or have been displaced throughout history. Ultimately, the artist thinks about spaces and layers when she’s working, remarking that paintings can’t just hang on a wall and remain reticent – “they didn’t come about that way in the studio,” she says. And that’s another through-line of all her paintings: that the point of stability is moving.


Having lived in China, Kenya, Thailand and the UK; you have a diverse cultural past and often refer to the ideas of ‘third-culture’, ‘trans-border’ and ‘placeless-ness’. What do these terms mean to you and how do you feel they influence your work in terms of past and present? 

There’s a kind of boundary-less-ness that comes with these terms, and I think another term that’s relevant here is “digital-native”, which Pati Lara at The RYDER Projects coined for me. In many cases, it’s a feeling of being the “other”, as if there’s nowhere to belong and there’s no claim to any position. On the other hand, I do feel strongly that I can assert myself (simultaneously and comfortably) in diversely different places and situations. There’s a fluidity – which is not just about being “third-culture”, but is also about the heightened connectedness of our entire generation. These terms are affirmative and I believe it’s how socially and geo-politically we’re progressing. In my work, the terms dictate the motifs and images I use and my imagined audience. They make me think about extensions of the self. For example, Nam Jun Paik is a proponent for the idea that technology is an inevitable extension of ourselves. I see that globalisation is an extension of the necessity to preserve individual localities.

Following your education at the Slade and the RCA, you received the Cité Internationale des Arts artist residency in Paris, the Chadwell Award and the 9-month long residency at The British School at Rome. Do you feel these experiences helped develop your work or consolidated your practice? 

If anything, these residencies opened up my work instead of reinforcing anything. Each experience was very different though. I had an amazing summer studio at Cité des Arts and that was during the summer break of my RCA years, so it filled up a chunk of time which otherwise could have been idle. It also revealed to me a deeper understanding of the complex relationship the French have with painting. Then there was the Chadwell Award which gave me a year-long studio in East London right after I finished art school. It was such a crucial springboard for me because it provided a lot of stability at a time that’s quite daunting for new graduates. And Rome! Where do I even begin…! When I meet other friends who have been to The British School at Rome like Phillip Allen, we just nod to each other and agree: you don’t really believe it’s life-changing until you’ve done it – and it totally is.


During our visit you described painting today as “…the computational aggregate of multiple sources and influences”. With this in mind, your work explores a dialogue between old-school technical dexterity and contemporary freedom. So, what does it mean to paint? (A question I noticed pinned to the wall of your studio) and why do you like to be reminded of this question?

That quote is from Laura Hoptman, formally senior curator of Painting at MoMA. I think it’s super befitting of the current climate of painting. To paint is inevitably somewhat self-indulgent. However this question is evermore compelling now, precisely because we are in an era that’s overloaded with digital imaging tools, augmented and virtual realities, which in essence, emulate much of the functions of painting: to create illusions, tricks, and fantasies. The challenge painting today is not unlike when Photography was invented, and so I believe working in this medium is evermore compelling. Painting is relevant, if not even more pertinent. Painting possesses the most extensive history as an artistic form. Its transformation is symptomatic of social, political, and cultural changes; painting is the evidence of our changes and mutations. So instead of asking why painting, perhaps we can ask why is the direction of painting disintegrating today? Why are painters throwing all kinds of visual tropes and clutter into the tight space of one canvas? Maybe it reflects on the accelerating rate of our information age, the abundance of resources we now can access, and the ability to refer to vastly diverse points of history and narratives. (To power our information and communication technology ecosystem, we consume more energy than some countries – so you can just imagine the ginormous amount of data we are producing and retaining.) Today we’ve become more image-based, and it is painting that delivers image in the most immediate form. Painting is an access, it is an entrance and it’s exposed. It’s something you can take away after seeing it… The idea of ownership is changing and accessibility has become a currency. This makes painting more interesting today. So these are some reasons to “why painting?” and there are infinitely more…

Working to your own personal algorithm means keeping a rhythm and formula in which you repeat the sequences. Running parallel to this however, are often interruptions to this rhythmic process. What is the significance of these repetitions, as well as these glitches to the algorithm? 

Repetition is a big part of my work for several reasons: the repetitive action allows me to relinquish control as the process takes over the painting – usually there’s a rule to follow at the outset. The finished look is unknown to me and this provides a level of surprise for myself. Surprises also happen when a mistake occurs, like when paint bleeds outside a stencil, and I take pleasure from that. Repetition in essence is an anticipation or an expectation; it’s not about sameness because a duplicate or reproduction occupies a different temporal space. So conceptually, against smudges and errors that are allowed to manifest, repetition in my work is to disrupt assumptions. I get frustrated when people want to put labels on me and my work, like when a collector once asked me, are you a Chinese artist or a British artist? as if there’s no middle ground. Things are much more fluid now and I want to resist these assumptions which shut down so many conversations.

By the repetition of forms, associations build with the ideas of mass production. Is this intentional or in any way linked to your background; in terms of China being at the forefront of the worlds manufacturing? Does the use of silver within your work relate back to the notion of mechanical production and ideas of consumption?

Not consciously, no. It’s interesting how lots of people make this association because they see that I’m from China. I do have a lot of respect for labour and effort, but maybe this is just cultural. The silver borders in my work simply act as a framing device. I want to contain the repetitive fields in my work and make the point that the repetitions are not endless. The paintings are independent, definitive, and I want them to reject associations with patterns and wallpaper.

There is such a graphic component to your recent works; with connotations to the layers of browse windows or dragging, warping or distorting elements within Photoshop. Yet there is always a level of human attribution. Has the juxtaposition between graphic and organic always been paramount in terms of your works intentions? 

The graphic component in my work is probably symptomatic of our generation –growing up with tools like Photoshop and Illustrator, where graphic distortion has become our vocabulary. Though the tools have prescribed rules and limitations, it’s up to the user to work with the instruments, as it always has been; the tools do not direct the course of action. So yes, my work is about this negotiation. I think about what we can’t dictate (at least cannot dictate as much) and manipulate: physics, gravity, the inorganic world. Painting is very physical, both in relation to the human body and to natural forces. It’s uncontrollable and can be a very rough, and I want to return the works to this principle as well.

By using different mathematical tools and stencils of your motifs to create your repeated forms, are you hoping to achieve a certain level of precision within your works?

Clarity is important. Though, maybe it’s because precision and clarity allow me to do more of the dirty work. For instance, I make my own stencils from cartridge paper. These can be rather crude and often paint bleeds over the edges in delicate ways. I then have to decide whether to keep the flaw or clean it up – it’s about a push and pull between control and the organic.

In order to create your painted digital landscapes, there is such a deliberate discipline yet very clear moments of disorder. Almost like an aesthetic rebellion, it leads into the notion of fragmentation. How do you feel the digital has contributed to the idea of disconnection and disruption in both art and experience? 

There are many levels of paradoxes to the digital – some we are aware of, whilst others are more hidden. A simple example is the interconnection between people. As we become more connected through the web and social media, in real life we might have become more distant. My parents and I text frequently, they live in Hong Kong. This connectedness makes me feel like we share our everyday knick-knacks, but it’s an artificial kind of closeness. We rarely speak on the phone anymore, perhaps once every few months, and more routinely our text messages are rudimentary, skittish even. With the growth of the digital, we’re also being trained to navigate an increasingly fragmented realm. Take Facebook, Instagram, or Reddit. They disintegrate the mind, collapse thought into pieces. So much cognitive power is needed to navigate these platforms and it’s a constant process of disrupting, reassembling, attending, </repeat>. Discontinuance is the apparatus wielded by new powers – the information giants. With art it is the same, there’s a sense of disintegration in the direction art is moving. Though I feel this is neither positive nor negative. There’s just no “greater cause” to fight for collectively. Art has become more individual, more private.

Keeping with the concept of fragmentation, you are currently involved in a group show at PLUS-ONE Gallery with your ‘Manifesto Manifested’ – a writing of fragmented thoughts. Your first version of this was back in 2014. Are you able to tell us about the work and how it has evolved? 

This work of writing is a “manifesto” and is composed of a loosely connected train of thoughts. I started it back in 2014; in 2018 it took its current form and was released at my first solo show at Long March Space, Beijing. It’s divided into sections which discuss, in contradictory tones, current issues around technology, the digital information age, our emotions and behaviour today. These reflect the things that I’m constantly thinking about and really inform my practice. It’s also sort of a “pseudo” manifesto because of its paradoxical nature. In one point I may be praising automation and confirmation biases, and in another I would be questioning our lust for the illusion that technology creates. So there’s an openness to the manifesto. I want it to reflect on the many different facets and trends of value systems and beliefs today. It’s about fragmentation again. An updated version of this was released at a show I co- curated with PLUS-ONE Gallery, Antwerp, last December – titled Echo Chamber. You can also find a free copy of it on my website under “Texts”.

Is there a connection between your repeated motifs and the now symbolic use of emojis within this technological world? Is this a comment on how we function in a new digital age?

Not exactly. The motifs in my work are all very personal to me, and I edit my selection quite heavily precisely because I am very conscious of how freely we wield images and visual tropes today – from making memes to making works of art. In almost all cases, the motifs I select possess a duality – they take on multiple interpretations or have been displaced throughout history. Take the kilim for example, this is a central motif for my next solo show at Lawrie Shabibi, Dubai. I wanted to focus on this object because it’s a metaphor for “borderless-ness”: the pattern names in these rugs are not named according to countries or tribes, but rather wider geographical locations, as they’re primarily used by nomadic tribes. Kilims also have multiple functions, for instance as prayer rugs and covers, but also spatial dividers for the temporary shelters that nomadic people erect.Spiral columns are another example. The first known Western pair is the one in St Peter’s Basilica, Rome. However, these were originally taken from the Temple of Solomon in today’s Israel. It achieved a heightened status in the Baroque period; nevertheless they are one of very few secular objects used in religious settings. Ultimately spiral columns also transgressed beyond this context, as the columns didn’t actually provide any architectural function. Over time they were deserted by the church setting, but remained heavily present in paintings and prints for their decorative nature.

Would it be correct to say that the use of so many motifs can relate back to your consistent change in locations growing up?

Absolutely, I kind of think of it as creating a personal ecology of motifs.

An interesting motif used within your work is the Gömböc. You mentioned it’s the physical form of a math formula, and that it is theoretically the shape of non-living organisms like rocks, just before they reach the last step of evolution, becoming the sphere – the ultimate state of perfection. How do you relate to this object in terms of your position as an artist – does it relate to the concepts of evolution, change, stability, etc.?

The first time that I came across the Gömböc, I immediately associated it with my own upbringing. The Gömböc has only one stable point and one unstable point, so resting on a flat surface it would behave like a roly-poly toy: no matter how you position the shape, it would roll around until it’s found the stable point. This idea made me reflect on my childhood having moved around so much. One can say that the Gömböc is an unstable shape. Yet, isn’t it also a super stable shape! It would always return to that single point of stability. So I wondered how I should look at my upbringing and the background of many other international kids like myself, that the point of stability is moving. It’s like what you said in your previous question – “consistent change”. Coincidentally, I met the scientist behind the Gömböc in 2017, Gábor Domokos. We’re really good friends now and often exchange emails on new ideas and projects. He recently told me that NASA scientists, for example, are applying the Gömböc theory to understand Mars’ evolution, by looking at the shapes of rocks on the planet. So the Gömböc is kind of transcendental for me.

Within your studio, there is such an emphasis on research and categorisation. Tapped to the walls are groupings of items under headings like: ‘manicules/cursors’, ‘emotional attribution’, ‘terrain’, ‘architectural tapestry’, etc. You have used very specific terminology that highlight the diversity of your research; how did these phrases come about and why are they used to link your areas of investigation? Does each work contain one of each of these elements?

I think that I’m a sick child of this information age. My attention span is short and I’m interested in too many things at the same time, hence the multiple terminologies. So to combat this I’ve designated areas in my studio that focus on singular terms or phrases. Sometimes the term comes from a podcast or something a friend had said in passing. I really need to visit The Warburg Institute, it has a special system of classification – category-focused, like the way I work.

Going back to research, what do the initial stages of a work look like for you? How do exercises like mind mapping indicate or help shape the direction of a project?

I do a lot of drawing and painting on paper before I start a work. Along the way, I also draw models, systems, and repetitive formations to work things out. I don’t know what the painting would look like at the end, it can be very process-led and I negotiate the layers along the way. This probably makes it a more tedious process but I’m not interested in drafting an entire image and then representing that. Spider-maps help me visually weigh up the references I’ve used in different works. They help me evaluate connections between works and consolidate ideas for shows.

Trompe L’oeil is an art technique that you have spoken about previously and can be seen in much of your work. Why has this become such a vital component to the structure, meaning and outcome of each piece?

Trompe l’oeil for me is also about disrupting assumptions. The illusion it creates extends another space in my work. I think about spaces and layers when I’m working. Sometimes at the beginning of a piece, I cut out small strips of masking tape to make guidelines and grids on the canvas. Then towards the end of a work, I would simulate those guide-tapes by reproducing them in thick paint, so it looks like the tape has been left on the canvas. I want this to give the viewer an entryway into my process.

I noticed you had a scale model of an exhibition layout within your studio. How important is having an understanding of scale, spatial awareness and layout in terms of an exhibition space? 

Because I don’t work in series, my works can seem rather tangled up in the studio, at least for an unfamiliar spectator. So when thinking about a show, I like to de-thread them and a scale model helps me do that. In recent years, I have exhibited abroad a lot and because I can’t visit the exhibition spaces physically, it’s vital that I understand the space through other ways, for instance SketchUp or foam board models. Also, I see my paintings like different members of a family – a sister, an uncle, a cousin… and so, how they communicate or stand off each other is important to the show. Ultimately, the artist is orchestrating an entire experience. Paintings can’t just hang on a wall and remain reticent – they didn’t come about that way in the studio.

There are a few spots within your studio dedicated to certain artists – Hannah Höch, Charline Von Heyl and Joe Bradley that I spotted. How have these artists influenced you and your practice? 

Hannah Höch was instrumental to my work when I was studying at the RCA. Her collages make me think about my relationship to image-gathering, to layering, and to collage itself. Charline von Heyl has become increasingly important to me in recent years. I’m drawn to her energy, her recurring use of motifs (again there’s a strong element of collage in her work too), and her languages. Joe Bradley may be the odd one out here. He’s not a hero to me, though I want to think about his last Gagosian show: the roughness of those paintings, the chapped surfaces and the contained aggressiveness. Maybe it’s because these are things I don’t allow as much in my work and I want to be liberated to do them.


You mentioned a show at Lawrie Shabibi, Dubai, in the near future. What will this entail?

This will be my first solo show in the region, titled ‘Soft Borders’. I made eight new paintings for the show that contextualise notions of cultural and geographical fluidity, and the challenges of assuming a third-culture and digital-native identity. Dubai will be a very special context for me to exhibit, because of its fluid makeup and the transient nature of its inhabitants. Lots of works in the show reference the kilim. As I mentioned before, the kilim is border-defying – from the way its patterns are named to its connection to colonial history. I have referenced kilims quite a bit previously, so for this new show I started devising my own kilim patterns in the paintings, with symbols like programming brackets “{ }”. Kilims traditionally are woven by women who invent new motifs and pass them down as intangible cultural heritage. As a female artist, this is an important detail for me too. Other works in the show will also deal with memory, the politics of borders, the anatomy of AI power structure, amongst others.


Words by Vanessa Murrell


Vivien Zhang

Yambe Tam

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