EX: 1/30/2012
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Minsheng Art Museum(民生美术馆)
2012.11.25 Sun - 2013.03.01 Fri
Opening Exhibition
11/25/2012 17:00
Building F, NO.570 West Huaihai Road (Red Town), Changning District of Shanghai, China.
021 6282 8729
Opening Hours
Tuesday - Sunday, 10am -10pm (free after 6pm)

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Solo Exhibition by Gabriel Lester
[Press Release]

[Press Release]

Minsheng Art Museum presents Roxy, the first solo exhibition in China of internationally exhibited Dutch artist Gabriel Lester. Born in Amsterdam in 1972 and presently based in Amsterdam and Shanghai, Lester has been producing works since the mid-1990s that are informed by lexica of cinematography and architecture, and mediate the perception of the world that is constantly re-shaped by new technology and mass media. The show opens on November 25th 2012 and runs through January 15th2013. It will be accompanied by a series of events and a monographic book describing the career of the artist.

Roxy draws its title and inspiration from American theatrical impresario and entrepreneur Samuel Lionel Rothafel, known as “Roxy” (1882-1936), and his legendary Roxy Theatre. Roxy has become synonymous with theatre, cinema, and numerous international namesake venues, which enabled its infiltration into a broader culture sphere. In his Roxy, Gabriel Lester was inspired by the innovative spirits and eclecticism embodied in Roxy stories that he found while researching 1920s
silent films. Lester’s defining works, produced between the late 1990s and present, focus on reinventing the fundamental grammar and rhetoric that constitute the cinema and arrative

Located in the first gallery is How To Act (1999), a ultimedia installation that Lester produced during his early attempts to probe possibilities of cinematography. The work is composed of an empty stage bathed in alternating stage lights that are computer-programmed and synchronized with sound and music edited by the artist. This minimalistic and atmospheric light installation is deprived of any key element of theatre, such as actors and props, and instead the theatre is transformed into a cinema where the stage becomes a wide screen and a story unfolds with mystery and suspense.

On view in the neighboring gallery is Turn of the Events (2012), an installation developed from his celebrated works as The Past Catching up with the Present (2009). The work onsists of a conveyor belt carrying numerous sculpted models, shadows of which are projected onto the four enclosed walls by surrounding lights. As the artist attempts to explore the complexity and subtlety of time and space, the ancient form of shadow play has been translated into a contemporary multichannel animation with parallel narratives. With the belt rolling and shadows growing and fading, the piece addresses a range of subjects that have been central to Lester’s art, including the history of the human civilization, the environment, and urbanism.

For the Roxy, Lester created a site-specific installation based on the sculpture Melancholia in Arkadia, which the artist premiered for Salt in Istanbul in 2011. Melancholia in Arkadia was conceived by the artist as a three-dimensional experiment with the cinematic technique — in its case, the freeze-frame—and continued into his further exploration, for instance in his recent architectural sculpture in dOCUMENTA (13), which visualizes the cinematic cross-edit. The presentation in Shanghai showcases an array of lace curtains caught in a mind-bending moment of being blown up by a breeze from the locked windows in the museum’s passageway.

Recently with two projects included in dOCUMENTA (13), Gabriel Lester has exhibited extensively and internationally at major institutions and biennales, among many others, Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam; Gemeentemuseum, Den Haag; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio; Performa 09, New York; Artists Space, New York; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; Liverpool Biennial, Liverpool; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Busan Biennial, Busan; Baltic Triennal; PS1, New York; Witte de With, Rotterdam; Rijksakademie , Amsterdam; World Expo, Hannover. Major museum collections include: Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Stedelijk Museum, Museum De Paviljoens, Fondation Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, Rabobank Art Collection, 21CMuseum, etc.

As an artist working across various disciplines, Gabriel Lester has teamed up with Irma Boom (graphic designer), Hella Jongerius (designer), Rem Koolhaas/OMA (architect) and Louise
Schouwenberg (theoretician) to re-design of the United Nation’s North Delegates Lounge, one of the most prestigious and crucial spaces in the UN headquarters in New York. This
interdisciplinary architectural project will be completed by the end of 2012.