24 March–4 April, 2011


Hong Kong


CONTRASTS GALLERY presents LI TIANBING: A GAME AS A PRETENSE OF BEINGCurated by Italian art critic and curator. Contrasts Gallery is proud to present A Game as a Pretense of Being – Li Tianbing’s first solo exhibition in Hong Kong. The Paris-based Chinese artist will exhibit oil paintings and watercolours at the Pao Galleries, Hong Kong Arts Centre. The exhibition is curated by renowned Italianartcritic and curator Demetrio Paparoni.

Li Tianbing was born in Guilin in 1974, two years before the end of the Cultural Revolution. Li refers to the socio-cultural context of 1970s China and recalls his childhood to evoke the collective condition of his generation. His work reflect son the relationship between familial structure, identity of the individual, and society as a whole.

Now that he lives and works in Paris, Li’s paintings are haunted by his memories and an acute awareness of recent Chinese social history, expressing a constant duality in his struggle to define his identity as an adult and reconcile the values of the East and West.

The exhibition, A Game as a Pretense of Being, will feature works from three different series painted in 2009 and 2010. The common theme of these works is the self-portrait of the artist as a child. Using childhood photographs as a starting point, Li reflects on his solitary experience growing up under China’s one child policy. Through this approach he expresses the conflicts of today’s society, representing himself both alone and together with imaginary brothers and playmates he never had.

A Game as a Pretense of Being continues the artist’s exploration of his memories, reality, and fiction. Layering the present and rapidly disappearing past, Li evokes his concern for the struggle for personal identity in a society undergoing drastic evolutionary change.

Selected works