Private Opening (Gold VIP and Press only): 6 October, 1pm
VIP Opening: 6 October, 4pm
General Opening Hours: 7–10 October, 1–8pm; 11 October, 11am–5pm
Private Hours: 7–10 October, 11am–1pm
COEX Halls A & B, 513, Yeongdong-daero, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, Korea
Left: Antony Micallef b. 1975, Self-Portrait on Pink #2, 2015, Oil on French linen, 135 x 112 cm
Meddle: Su Xiaobai b. 1949, Big Kiln 6, 2014, Oil and lacquer on linen and wood, 77 x 70 x 9 cm
Right: Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA) b. 1962, Butterfly Kid (girl) III, 2015, Fibreglass mannequin, Dutch wax printed cotton textile, silk, metal, globe, and steel baseplate, 143 x 95 x 109 cm (Shonibare’s work image is courtesy of the artist, Stephen Friedman Gallery, London and Pearl Lam Galleries; Photographer: Stephen White)
Seoul—Pearl Lam Galleries is delighted to announce its return to the 14th edition of the Korean International Art Fair, now known as KIAF 2015/Art Seoul, with a dynamic stand that will feature abstract, figurative, new media, and photography works by 22 established and emerging artists from four different continents. This will mark the Galleries’ third participation in a Korean art fair, having successfully exhibited at Art Busan in June and at KIAF 2013.
At KIAF 2015/Art Seoul, which will take place from 6–11 October, the Galleries will be exhibiting works by Chinese artists Du Zhenjun, Jiang Dahai, Li Tianbing, Ma Yujiang, Ni Haifeng, Qin Yufen, Ren Ri, Shen Chen, Su Dong Ping, Su Xiaobai, Zhang Jianjun, Zhou Yangming, and Zhu Jinshi; Hong Kong artist Morgan Wong; Tibetan artist Gonkar Gyatso; Indonesian artist Gatot Pujiarto; British artists Antony Micallef, Peter Peri, and Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA); Australian artists Ben Quilty and John Young; and American artist Carlos Rolón/Dzine. By exhibiting artists from a variety of backgrounds, Pearl Lam Galleries aims to promote cross-cultural dialogue on contemporary art between the East and West.
The Galleries is excited to present a selection of Chinese abstract paintings by Jiang Dahai, Qin Yufen, Shen Chen, Su Dong Ping, Su Xiaobai, Zhang Jianjun, and Zhu Jinshi, who were born in the 1940s and 50s, as well as Zhou Yangming, born in 1971. These artists root their art in traditional Chinese philosophies such as Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism, which advocates being one with nature for mankind to achieve harmony. These artists enter meditative states to create their works, using various gestural brushstrokes to express their inner selves. Highlights include Dajue Temple 1 (2013) by Beijing-based artist Zhu Jinshi, who spent decades living in Germany. His impastoed oil paintings have a weighty, physical quality in their built-up surfaces, inseparable from their significance as expressive statement. Besides traditional Chinese influences, Zhu is also inspired by Michel Foucault’s theories of modernity. Splitting his time in between Shanghai and Düsseldorf, Germany, Su Xiaobai has developed his own technique for working with traditional Chinese lacquer to create sculptural painted works with shell-like finishes and sensuous, curved profiles. He is primarily concerned with colour, shape, and surface, rather than any recognisable subject matter. At KIAF/Art Seoul, he will present Big Kiln 6 (2014) and Tolerance 2 (2013), which both consist of oil and lacquer on linen and wood.
Major highlights at Pearl Lam Galleries’ stand include two works by British-born Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA), who opened his first Korean solo exhibition at the Daegu Art Museum this past May (currently on show through 18 October). At the fair, the artist will present his new sculpture Butterfly Kid (girl) III (2015), which continues his humorous exploration of current geo-political and social issues, including post-colonialism and climate change. The girl is dressed in Shonibare’s signature Dutch wax printed cotton textile, a fabric that is widely associated with Africa, although it actually originated in Indonesia but was mass-produced by Europeans in Africa. Shonibare uses the fabric as a symbol of colonialism, which in turn opens discussion about issues of authenticity, cultural hybridity, identity, and power. With global warming possibly leading to an apocalypse, Shonibare depicts a girl equipped with butterfly wings, ready to take off and escape.
Like Shonibare, Tibetan-born British artist Gonkar Gyatso is also interested in new cultural hybrid identities that have arisen from globalization. He will exhibit a work on paper, as well as two resin cast sculptures created in 2012 that are each in the form of a headless, cross-legged Buddha. The Buddha figure in Gyatso’s work is not meant to be a religious symbol, but is rather a representation of cultural elements and his Tibetan identity. Here, Gyatso expresses society’s fascination with pop culture and new hybrid identities by covering the sculptures in pop culture iconography such as stickers, magazine cut-outs, and bold newspaper headlines.
British artist Antony Micallef also addresses identity, but from a more introspective point of view, in his latest series of self-portraits. The artist will exhibit Self-Portrait on Pink #2, an oil on French linen painting that departs from his past pop art style and explores his relationship with paint. Through mark-making, Micallef creates multiple layers of thick paint, crafting a luscious density to embody human emotions and reflect his soul.
Other stand highlights include works by Hong Kong artist Morgan Wong, who is currently in Korea as an artist in residence at SeMA Nanji Residency in Seoul, an affiliate of the Seoul Museum of Art that welcomes young international artists. Wong focuses on durational performances to investigate the irrepressibility of time. At the fair, Wong will present a performance piece, along with additional works.
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.