Expo Chicago 2015


Stand 523

Vernissage: 17 September, 6–9pm

Fair Dates: 18–19 September, 11am–7pm; 20 September, 11am–6pm

Navy Pier Festive Hall, 600 East Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, USA

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Left: Zhu Jinshi b.1954, Brilliant, 2013, Oil on canvas, 180 x 160 cm (70 7/8 x 63 in.)

Middle: Choi Jeong Hwa b. 1961, Alchemy, 2003, Acrylic bowls, steel frames, LED lamps, chrome coating,  200–220 x Æ33 cm (78 3/4–86 5/8 x Æ13 in.)

Right: Ben Quilty b. 1973, Identity is a first world problem, 2014, Oil on linen, 190 x 280 cm (74 3/4 x 110 1/4 in.)


Chicago—Pearl Lam Galleries is delighted to exhibit at EXPO Chicago in September 2015, marking the Galleries’ first presentation at an art fair in the United States. As one of a few participating Asian galleries, the Galleries will bring a unique selection of works to the fourth edition of the international exposition of contemporary and modern art, which will be open to public from 18 to 20 September, 2015.

At stand 523, Pearl Lam Galleries will exhibit works by 18 artists from different regions, including American artist Jenny Holzer and Chicago-born Puerto Rican artist Carlos Rolón/Dzine; Chinese artists Jiang Dahai, Li Tianbing, Qin Yufen, Qiu Deshu, Ren Ri, Su Dong Ping, Su Xiaobai, Zhang Jianjun, and Zhu Jinshi; Hong Kong artist Morgan Wong; Korean artists Choi Jeong Hwa and Kwang Young Chun; Tibetan-born artist Gonkar Gyatso; British artist Antony Micallef; Australian artist Ben Quilty; and Italian artist Pino Pinelli. These works represent the Galleries’ mission of stimulating cross-cultural dialogue on contemporary art between China, the rest of Asia, and the West.

Pearl Lam Galleries will be presenting a new work by prominent Chicago-based artist Carlos Rolón/Dzine at the fair. The work, inspired by Rolón’s upbringing in Chicago, continues his characteristic multimedia studies of conspicuous consumption and urban artefacts. It is a mosaic mirror inspired by one from the artist’s childhood home. Born into a Puerto Rican family in Chicago, the artist bore witness to the ways in which first generation immigrants adapted to new American middle-class lifestyles. These families brought the culture of their diaspora into their homes by decorating walls and furniture with exotic colors, textures, and patterns to create a sense of identity, a theme that is mimicked in the work on view.

Tibetan-born British artist Gonkar Gyatso will present his new work 13.472 Prayers, which was created specifically for the fair. Having lived in China, India, London, and New York, the artist translates his diasporic experience and fuses different cultures and traditions into his work. In 13.472 Prayers, Gyatso uses characters from the Tibetan alphabet to construct a circular form. Long interested in form and aesthetics, this work takes his interest to new heights. In an effort to use his work as a vehicle for spirituality and mindfulness, each character also represents a prayer said by Gyatso, similar to the recitation of mantras by Buddhist monks. Gonkar Gyatso’s works will be featured in a solo exhibition at Michael C. Carlos Museum in Atlanta, Georgia in 2016.

The Galleries will also present American artist Jenny Holzer’s Truism: Money Creates Taste (2013). The white marble bench was created for the artist’s first solo exhibition in Hong Kong, Light Stream, in 2013 at Pearl Lam Galleries. Truisms (1977–79), which comprises over 250 single sentence declarations written by Holzer at the beginning of her career and resembles existing aphorisms, was translated for the first time in Chinese for the exhibition. Jenny Holzer is one of the most respected contemporary artists working today, best known for large-scale public projections of text. Influenced by literature, society, and politics, her work explores notions of transparency, sexuality, morality, and power. Her texts take the form of declarations, quotes, and statements from many points of view, often inhabiting complex and controversial subject matters.

Renowned Chinese artist Zhu Jinshi will be a highlight at the Pearl Lam Galleries stand with his oil on canvas work Brilliant (2013). Using traditional Chinese aesthetics but reinventing them for the 21st century, Zhu’s canvases incorporate a series of “mind images” that emphasize the harmony between mankind and the natural world. Zhu Jinshi’s Boat, a 40-feet monumental installation, is currently on show at 28 Chinese at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco.

Chinese artist Su Dong Ping will also be featured at the fair. The act of painting is very much an emotional and psychological necessity for the artist. Pearl Lam Galleries will present Su’s painting, 2015 no. 13, which consists of thick impasto built up with wire and nails.

Los Angeles-based artist Li Tianbing will present Riding in the Neon (2012) at EXPO Chicago. Li often draws inspiration from his hometown of Guilin, China for his works, which often investigate the phenomenon of alienation in postmodern societies. Through a poetic staging of the dramas of mankind in intimate portraits composed from autobiography and fantasy, Li continues to explore how a society’s identity is strongly conditioned by the manner in which it structures or allows people to organize its nuclear families.

Pearl Lam Galleries will also show Antony Micallef’s Self-Portrait on Grey No. 4 (2015). The British artist is widely recognized as one of the finest painters in contemporary art. Ben Quilty, a top Australian contemporary artist, will be showing Identity is a first world problem (2014), a bold image luring the viewer into the artist’s unfathomable world with his characteristic textured painting style. Quilty is one of the single most important artists living and working in Australia, and this is Quilty’s American debut. Pearl Lam Galleries presented a solo exhibition of his works in Hong Kong earlier this year.

Pearl Lam Galleries and The Peninsula Chicago will present Alchemy (2015), a public site-specific installation by Korean artist Choi Jeong Hwa, on the 5th floor of The Peninsula Chicago to coincide with the fair. Choi Jeong Hwa is not only an artist, but is also an accomplished architect and furniture designer. His works often explore the intrinsic value hidden beneath the surface of art and challenges and questions the viewers.

“We are proud to present at an American art fair for the first time. EXPO Chicago is a unique platform for our Galleries to reach a wider audience. We are excited to be working with artists from both the United States and elsewhere for the fair, and we will continue to look for opportunities to generate dialogue on contemporary art between Asia and the West.”

— Pearl Lam, Founder of Pearl Lam Galleries.

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 has also introduced leading international artists such as Leonardo Drew, Jenny Holzer, Carlos Rolón/ Dzine and Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA) 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, culturally relevant work.