20 Jun 2024

Yan Lei: Reinterpreting Tradition, Challenging Power in Two Concurrent Exhibitions at M+

Yan Lei is currently featured in two concurrent exhibitions at M+ museum in Hong Kong. Yan graduated from the China Academy of Art, Hangzhou, in 1991 and works in painting, video, photography, and installation. He belongs to a generation of artists who use art to negotiate authority, taking images from Chinese and Western popular culture and manipulating them, often digitally, to challenge the power structures of the art system. 

M+ Sigg Collection: Another Story, has been on view since 22 September 2022 and takes a visual approach to examining the diverse styles and practices of contemporary Chinese art from the 1990s to the present day. Distinct from the socio-political or chronological narratives of the inaugural From Revolution to Globalisationexhibition, Another Story surveys how artists have reconsidered their cultural identities and expressed their uncertain state of being during China’s rapid modernisation. The exhibition brings together a multitude of works exhibiting qualities of overflowing visuals, ambiguous meanings, obsessions with transience, and reinterpretations of tradition. 

Shanshui: Echoes and Signals, opened on 3 February 2024 and is ongoing. This exhibition features works selected from the M+ collection that explore the complex connections between landscape and humanity in our post-industrial and increasingly virtual world. Shanshui (‘mountain and water’) is a cultural legacy integral to Chinese philosophical thinking and poetic imagination, and motivates a millennium-old tradition of ink painting across East Asia. 

Together, these two concurrent exhibitions at M+ provide an in-depth look at Yan Lei’s innovative artistic practice and his contributions to traditional Chinese artistic forms for the 21st century.

For more details, please contact info@pearllamgalleries.com or visit https://www.mplus.org.hk/en/collection/