Active online as a media artist, blogger, activist and programmer, aaajiao is the virtual persona of Shanghai and Berlin artist Xu Wenkai. Born in 1984—the title of George Orwell’s classic allegorical novel— and in one of China’s oldest cities, Xi’an, aaajiao’s art and works are marked by a strong dystopian awareness, literati spirits and sophistication. Many of aaajiao’s works speak to new thinkings, controversies and phenomena around the Internet, with specific projects focusing on the processing of data, the blogsphere and China’s Great Fire Wall. aaajiao’s recent projects extend his practice to various disciplines (among them, architecture, topography, and design) to capture the pulse of the young generation consuming cyber technology and living in social media.

aaajiao’s work has been featured in numerous exhibitions around the world, upcoming and recent shows include Deep Simulator, Castello di Rivoli Museo d'Arte Contemporanea, Turin (2020); Art in the Age of the Internet, 1989 to Today, The Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, Boston (2018); unREAL, Haus der elektronischen Künste, Basel (2017); Shanghai Project Part II, Shanghai (2017); Temporal Turn: Art and Speculation in Contemporary Asia, Spencer Museum of Art, Kansas (2016); Take Me (I’m Yours), Jewish Museum, New York (2016), Pirelli HangarBicocca, Milano (2017); Overpop, Yuz Museum, Shanghai (2016); Hack Space (curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist and Amira Gad), K11 Art Foundation Pop-up Space, Hong Kong and chi K11 art museum, Shanghai (2016); Globale: Global Control and Censorship, ZKM | Centre for Art and Media, Karlsruhe (2015); Thingworld International Triennial of New Media Art, The National Art Museum of China, Beijing (2014); and Transmediale, HKW | Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin (2010). 

In 2023, aaajiao's work was collected by the Pompidou Center in France. In 2014, he not only won the 3rd Art Sanya Awards Jury Prize, but also was shortlisted for the 1st OCAT Pierre Huber Prize. 

aaajiao lives and works in Shanghai and Berlin.

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