Stands D9 and B5

Haliç Congress Centre, Istanbul

Screen Shot 2014-09-18 at 11.29.24Zhu Jinshi b. 1954, Grassland 1 (2013), Oil on canvas, 180 x 160 cm

Su Xiaobai b. 1949, Glacial Lake (2013), Oil, lacquer, linen and wood, 176 x 176 cm

Joana Vasconcelos b. 1971, Tetris 17th Century (2012), Viúva Lamego hand painted tiles,

handmade woollen crochet, fabrics, ornaments, polyester, MDF, iron, 378 x 336 x 308 cm


Exhibition Dates

26–28 September, 2014

VIP Preview: 25 September, 2–5pm

Vernissage: 25 September, 5–9pm

Pearl Lam Galleries is delighted to announce its participation in ArtInternational at Haliç Congress Centre in Istanbul, exhibiting at stand D9 with a special project at Stand B5 from 26 to 28 September.

Joining the fair in Istanbul for the first time, the Galleries will present a number of international artists, many of whom will be showing in the city for the very first time. Istanbul, at the intersection of East and West, reflects the Galleries’ mission to act as a bridge between the two worlds and provide a platform for cross-cultural dialogue and understanding.

At Stand D9, Pearl Lam Galleries will feature a selection of works by Chinese and international artists, including Zhu Jinshi, Qin Yufen, Su Xiaobai, Li Tianbing, Kimiyo Mishima, Carlos Rolón/Dzine, Yinka Shonibare, MBE (RA) and Ben Quilty. Additionally, a special project by Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos will be displayed at Stand B5.

Joana Vasconcelos will present a sculptural installation entitled Tetris 17th Century (2012), an abstract structure covered in brightly hand-coloured tiles that resemble the retro computer game. Soft woollen crochet and fabric components in organic forms snake around the solid structure in a playful manner. The handcrafted elements are juxtaposed with references to contemporary society, casting a critical eye on the role of technology and its destabilising effects on consumer culture, while also challenging traditional views about a woman’s role.

Highlights at Stand D9 include some of the most prominent Chinese artists who led the movement that broke free from the prevailing realist painting of the 80s and are now at the forefront of Chinese abstract art.

One of the leading exponents of contemporary Chinese abstract art, Zhu Jinshi is well known for the heavily encrusted surfaces of his works. Zhu will be showing two paintings, Grasslands 1 (2013) and Bold and Decisive Painting (2013), where the thick layers of paint seem to be dripping off the canvas. His work combines the painting traditions of China with the West in a highly individualised visual language. Zhu is influenced by both Chinese and Continental philosophy: the writings of the grand master of Zen Huineng, whose teachings focused on the wisdom of “emptiness” as reflected in the Diamond Sutra, as well as Michel Foucault’s theories of modernity.

Other highlights include Su Xiaobai’s lacquer paintings Glacial Lake (2013) and Intactness 11 (2014). The artist’s work is influenced by Western modernism, which stresses modernity in form and material, while remaining deeply rooted in Chinese culture. Su reinvents the ancient old technique of lacquer in a contemporary manner that reflects Chinese tradition and questions the very structure and language of paint. The layering technique used in his work results in exquisitely rendered surfaces with sensuous, curved profiles that give a sculptural quality to his abstract paintings.

Qin Yufen’s large ink drawing, Flight of Colours 5 (2014) is an explosion of colours on paper.  The powerful brushstrokes typify the artist’s practice that embraces Taoist principles on the relationship between humanity and nature, and the cultivation of the inner self. In the 1980s, Qin moved to Germany and during this period her work was influenced by both Western and traditional Chinese traditions of ink painting, while maintaining Oriental aesthetics of tranquillity and ethereality.

Li Tianbing belongs to a younger generation of contemporary Chinese artists and is considered one of the leading painters of his time. His work commands a similar level of international attention usually afforded to elder contemporaries such as Zhang Huan and Yan Pei Ming. Li will present Autoportrait Vert avec la Forêt (2010) and Bataille et Forêt (2011), which continue his exploration into life as a child in China and are informed by his own experiences. The semi-biographical paintings depict a unique and provocative comment on his country’s one-child policy, which was introduced in 1979. Li recreates a childhood by painting himself and several illusory characters in a palette of dramatic greys that are inspired by the monochrome images in a small album of the artist, The scenes in his paintings evoke China’s past and present, its pastoral idylls, and commercialised city sprawls.

Kimiyo Mishima’s ceramics reference the symbols of a globalised world in the form of consumer products. The artist will be presenting two new works, Box Coca Cola (2014) and Box Postpak (2014). Mishima’s practice combines ceramics with printmaking, which the artist calls “breakable printed matter”. The artist reproduces ordinary, everyday items in fired clay, such as stacks of newspapers, food packaging or drink cans, before they are silkscreened. Mishima arrived at this process after using torn newspapers and magazines in collage-making before reprinting a page from The New York Times onto a ceramic surface in 1970. Her dry humour and tactile pieces are a reminder of how fragile the environment is and our collective responsibility.

A pre-occupation with consumerism as a global trait also underpins Yinka Shonibare’s Hong Kong Toy Painting (2013), which was created for his exhibition Dreaming Rich at Pearl Lam Galleries, Hong Kong. The visually opulent wall painting consists of 27 round canvases in rich hues of gold, red and brown, which are framed by a multitude of toys like rays in a galaxy of stars. The work continues Shonibare’s exploration of colonialism and post-colonialism, while commenting on modern day relationships with labour, power, and wealth.

Carlos Rolón/Dzine will present two new works that are informed by his investigation of issues relating to cultural identity. The artist is particularly interested in the duality of his own identity, born into a Puerto Rican household in Chicago. His work draws from art history, popular culture, folklore, faith, and neo-baroque to present a unique view of an identity that is at once melancholic, exuberant and excessive. Rolón creates a world where everyday objects assume a cultural significance beyond their material value.

Notions of excess and living dangerously are the inspiration behind Ben Quilty’s large diptychs Lying on Jim Morrison’s Grave (2014) and Oscar Wilde is Buried Here (2014), which have been created during his current residency in Paris. Bold images of grotesque characters or unconventional objects challenge perspectives and lure the viewer into the artist’s unfathomable world, which is characterised by rich textures and contrasts. His painting style can be recognised from his thick layering of paint applied with a palette knife, smearing the paint to create his figures. Quilty does not attempt to hide the strokes from his knife, rather he utilises the thick slabs of paint to block in large areas of the canvas with high contrast colours.

About Li Tianbing

Li Tianbing was born in 1974 in the southern province of Guilin, China. He moved to Paris at the age of 22 to study at the École Nationale des Beaux Arts, where surrounded by a wealth of visual, cultural, and historical resources, he quickly developed his own visual language with which to express his cultural origins.

Recent solo shows include at Stephen Friedman Gallery, London, 2012; A Game as a Pretense of Being, curated by Demetrio Paparoni at Hong Kong Arts Centre, Hong Kong; Childhood Fantasy, Contrasts Gallery (now Pearl Lam Galleries), Shanghai, 2010; L&M Arts Gallery, New York; and others.

About Kimiyo Mishima

Kimiyo Mishima (b. 1932, Japan) started as an artist in the 1950s.

Mishima’s work has been included in a number of international exhibitions, including The Fascination of Ceramics x The Excitement of Art at the Shiragaki Ceramic Cultural Park, Shiga, Japan; Soaring Voices—Contemporary Japanese Women Ceramic Artists (2011) at Samuel H. Harn Museum; and Toji Avant Garde et Tradition de la Ceramique Japonaise, Musée National de Ceramique Sèvres France. A retrospective exhibition, Painting Period, focusing on the artist’s early career was recently shown at Yamaki Fine Art, Japan.

About Qin Yufen

Qin Yufen (b. 1954, Shandong Province) began creating abstract works in the late 1970s.

Qin Yufen has held solo exhibitions in Beijing, Tokyo, and Berlin, among other international cities. She has participated in several group exhibitions, including Left Hand, Right Hand: A Sino-German Exhibition of Contemporary Art (2003), Beijing; The Wall: Reshaping Contemporary Chinese Art (2005), New York; The First Today’s Documents 2007—Energy: Spirit, Body, Material (2007), Beijing Today Art Museum; and Wu Ming, Form is Formless: Chinese Contemporary Abstract Art (2011), Contrasts Gallery (now Pearl Lam Galleries), Shanghai.

About Ben Quilty

Born in 1973, Quilty grew up in the outer suburbs of northwestern Sydney, Australia, where his youth typified the self-destructive character of Australian masculinity: drugs, alcohol, and recklessness.

Ben Quilty’s paintings of his Holden Torana produced a sell-out show in 2002 and since then his work has been included in many exhibitions around the world. In 2009 Quilty won the Doug Moran Portrait Prize in 2009 for his painting Jimmy Barnes, and in 2011 he won the Archibald Prize for his portrait of Margaret Olley. In 2014, he won the inaugural Prudential Eye Awards in Singapore, which was followed by a solo exhibition at Saatchi Gallery, London.

About Carlos Rolón/Dzine

Carlos Rolón aka Dzine was born in 1970 in Chicago, Illinois, where he currently lives and works.

The artist has had solo exhibitions at The Dallas Contemporary, Dallas; Bass Museum of Art, Miami; Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, UK; Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico, San Juan, Puerto Rico; and CAM Contemporary Art Museum, St. Louis. In 2007 Rolón represented Ukraine in the 52nd Venice Biennale. He is a recipient of the Joan Mitchell Foundation award for Painting and Sculpture.

About Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA)

Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA) was born in London and moved to Lagos, Nigeria at the age of three. He returned to London to study Fine Art first at Byam Shaw College of Art (now Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design), and then at Goldsmiths College, where he received his MFA, graduating as part of the ‘Young British Artists’ generation. He currently lives and works in the East End of London. Over the past decade, Shonibare has become well known for his exploration of colonialism and post-colonialism within the contemporary context of globalisation. Shonibare’s work explores these issues, alongside those of race and class, through the use of a wide range of media. Mixing Western art history and literature, he asks what constitutes our collective contemporary identity today.

Shonibare was a Turner Prize nominee in 2004 and awarded the decoration of Member of the “Most Excellent Order of the British Empire” (MBE). He has added this title to his professional name. He has exhibited at the Venice Biennale and internationally at leading museums around the world.

About Su Xiaobai

Su Xiaobai was born in 1949 in Wuhan, the capital city of Hubei province. In 1965 he joined the School of Art and Crafts in Wuhan, and from 1985 he studied oil painting at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. In 1987, he received a scholarship to study at the Kunstakademie in Dusseldorf, where he was exposed to avant-garde Western art. Through his various journeys, Su has developed a language rich in personal experience and abstract symbols. During the 1990s, his work became progressively less figurative and following his return to China in 2003, it has increasingly focused on essential characteristics of colour, shape, and surface.

Recent solo shows include Su Xiaobai at Almine Rech in Paris and Painting and Being curated by Paul Moorhouse, curator at the National Portrait Gallery in London, at Pearl Lam Galleries in HK.

About Joana Vasconcelos

Joana Vasconcelos is a Portuguese artist, born in Paris in 1971, who lives and works in Lisbon, Portugal. She achieved major international recognition when her sculpture The Bride, a 5 metre high chandelier comprised of 25,000 tampons, was exhibited at the Venice Biennale in 2005. Since then, her career has gone from strength to strength, including recent solo exhibitions at Château de Versailles in 2012 (where she was the first woman and youngest artist ever to exhibit work), Palácio Nacional da Ajuda, Lisbon, 2013; Trafaria Praia, the Portuguese Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale, 2013; and Joana Vasconcelos: Time Machine at Manchester Art Gallery, 2014.

About Zhu Jinshi

After completing an artist-in-residency in Germany and teaching in the Architecture Department of the Berlin Technical University, Zhu Jinshi (b. 1954, Beijing) returned to Beijing, where he currently lives and works. He began painting abstract works in the late 1970s, and participated in the Stars group exhibition, the first avant-garde art exhibition after the Cultural Revolution. Zhu has exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions, including 28 Chinese  (2013–14) at The Rubell Family Collection in Miami; Zhu Jinshi: The Reality of Paint  (2013) at Pearl Lam Galleries in Hong Kong; Zhu Jinshi (2012) at Blum and Poe in Los Angeles; and Chinese Contemporary Abstract, 1980s until Present: MINDMAP  (2012), which was Pearl Lam Galleries’ inaugural show in Hong Kong.

About Pearl Lam Galleries

Founded by Pearl Lam, Pearl Lam Galleries is a driving force within Asia’s contemporary art scene. With over 20 years of experience exhibiting Asian and Western art and design, it is one of the leading and most established contemporary art galleries to be launched out of China. Playing a vital role in stimulating international dialogue on Chinese and Asian contemporary art, the Galleries is dedicated to championing artists who re-evaluate and challenge perceptions of cultural practice from the region. The Galleries in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore collaborate with renowned curators, each presenting distinct programming from major solo exhibitions, special projects and installations to conceptually rigorous group shows. Based on the philosophy of Chinese Literati where art forms have no hierarchy, Pearl Lam Galleries is dedicated to breaking down boundaries between different disciplines, with a unique gallery model committed to encouraging cross-cultural exchange.

Contemporary Chinese Abstract art is heavily represented in the Galleries roster. Influential Chinese artists Zhu Jinshi and Su Xiaobai, who synthesise Chinese sensibilities with an international visual language, are presented internationally with work now included in major private and public collections worldwide. The Galleries have also introduced leading international artists such as Jenny Holzer, Jim Lambie and Yinka Shonibare MBE to markets in the region, providing opportunities for new audiences in Asia to encounter their work. Pearl Lam Galleries encourages international artists to create new work, which engages specifically with the region—collaborating to produce thought-provoking and culturally relevant work.

Pearl Lam Design shows works by established and emerging international designers, including Maarten Baas, Mattia Bonetti, André Dubreuil, and Studio Makkink & Bey, in exhibitions and design fairs around the world. They are invited to push the boundaries of traditional Chinese art and craft techniques and create new works that reflect their experiences in China.

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