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Pace Gallery in March: Qiu Xiaofei’s exhibition

1 MARCH 2017 Pace Gallery is proud to announce its return to Art Basel in Hong Kong in March 2017 at Booth 1C22. Alongside a strong booth presentation featuring works by the gallery’s most well-known artists, Pace will also participate in the newly introduced Kabinett sector with works by Chinese artist Qiu Xiaofei. Concurrently, Pace Hong Kong will present a solo exhibition by Qiu, introducing over 10 new works by the artist.


Pace Gallery at Art Basel in Hong Kong

Kabinett, a favorite sector of Art Basel’s Miami Beach show, will make its Hong Kong debut in March 2017. The first edition of Kabinett at Art Basel’s Hong Kong show will include 19 carefully curated projects, ranging from thematic group presentations to solo shows, presented by exhibitors from Asia, Europe and the United States.

Pace presents three large-scale paintings by Qiu (b. 1977, Harbin, China) which reflect his artistic practice that strives for broader freedom. This is not simply the discussion of freedom in painting and writing, but the experience of free generation within the artistic process, and the act of leading the viewer into experiences and understandings beyond the realm of reality.

Unlike most extemporaneous painting, his practice is not limited to form, material or expressive technique within painting, nor it is a purely aesthetic exploration. Instead, Qiu constantly draws the ‘external’ into his painting process, and utilises ready-mades, discarded objects, tools unrelated to painting, and even some oppositional thinking and action, for generating his overall visual.

In the Galleries sector (Booth 1C22), Pace Hong Kong will present a wide range of works created by 26 different artists, including some of the most well-known international talent such as Robert Rauschenberg, Julian Schnabel, Kiki Smith, Yoshimoto Nara or Sol LeWitt as well as recognised stars of contemporary Chinese art, including Zhang Xiaogang, Li Songsong, and Song Dong.

Booth highlights include Green Gauge (Spread), 1981 by Robert Rauschenberg. The piece comes from the Spread series (1975 – 1983). “Spread” is a term used to describe a wide expanse of land, as well as a fabric covering; it also refers to the large scale of the artworks from this series. In Green Gauge (Spread) Rauschenberg applied acrylic paint, solvent transfer, and collage on wood, while also adding an ironing board for three-dimensionality.

A contemporary digital work titled Enso, 2017 by teamLab is another booth highlight. Enso is the Zen practice of drawing a circle with a single brush stroke. This artwork depicts an Enso drawn as Spatial Calligraphy. The brush stroke is suspended in space but the viewpoint changes to reveal the circle Enso. teamLab has been working on Spatial Calligraphy since the collective formed. As new interpretation of traditional calligraphy, Spatial Calligraphy reconstructs calligraphy in three-dimensional space and expresses the depth, speed and power of the brush stroke.

Solo Exhibition by Qiu Xiaofei at Pace Hong Kong

Just before the opening of Art Basel in Hong Kong, and employing the breadth of Qui Xiaofei’s artistic repertoire, Pace Hong Kong will open an exhibition of over 10 new works by him at the gallery on 20 March from 6-8pm. The solo exhibition, titled “Pine or Willow”, is comprised of oil painting, watercolor, drawing, sculpture and installation. The works explore relationships between personal experience and history.

As one of the leading figures in the emerging Chinese art scene, Qiu focuses on depicting the intrinsic energy of the act of painting and its potential for performance. The theme of his work has evolved from experiments with images from personal and collective memories, into a study of cultural psychology and the unconsciousness of the society. His work also explores into the improvisation and uncertainty of painting as an action, seeking a powerful balance point in the mixed and rich imagery.

The exhibition will showcase some of the artist’s latest paintings, both on canvas and on paper, as well as painting installations. The selection of works further explores into the contradictory thinking patterns observed in his older works. Through repeated depictions of the state of contraction, the works highlight the characteristic of suspending dynamics within the contraction itself.

Recently, Qiu has been concerned with the psychological state during the creative process. His artworks evoke a dreamlike state. Many of Qiu’s paintings are based on photographs from his childhood. His current multi-disciplinary work combines drawings with sculptures and act as a chronological recorder of the artists’ history. As the artist explores various parts of his memory or ‘thought diversions’, as he calls them, they allow him to delve deeper into his ‘procedural, subconscious and personal experiences.’

As Qiu Xiaofei explains, “The starting point was a thought I had, or my perception of shape–painting does not start from a surface; instead it starts with an object, as it forms a relation with the shape of an object. The biggest difference between painting and a representational drawing is that the idea behind painting is not painterly; it is about the origin of painting.”

The exhibition runs from 21 March – 27 April, 2017.

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