Art Statements Gallery is proud to present The Last Cynical Realist a solo exhibition by Chinese contemporary artist Chen Qiuchi
January 18th to February 28th, 2006
China’s post-1989 Cynical Realism Movement has shaped and defined what we have come to understand as the major force behind Chinese contemporary art, and the leading artists of this movement, such as Fang Lijun and Yue Minjun, have undoubtedly achieved international status.
The exhibition ‘Chen Qiuchi --- The Last Cynical Realist’, as the title suggests, is the first platform to introduce Chen, a yet to be internationally discovered and recognised artist, to the larger public outside of Mainland China. Although Chen was born, raised and educated in the same era as other artists from the group, he fell short of becoming part of the establishment, simply due to the fact that he did not graduate from China’s select art schools, coupled with his shyness of self-promotion.
While Chen Qiuchi’s paintings definitely share some similar qualities and themes with other cynical realists, his concern and focus are beyond the usual subjects of his contemporaries. He draws from both Chinese and Western symbols, blending surrealism and pop elements in his creations, producing a unique vision that is both universal and diversified.
Chen’s interest lays in issues that are connected to the rapid development of modern technologies; and modernity’s subsequent social changes are a recurring theme in Chen’s intriguing and singular body of work. Chen finds that our era of high technology is one of progress, but it is also one of environmental and social crises. Much of Chen’s work visually focuses on the contours of the human head to reflect the existential thought process that drives the day-to-day that makes up our world. Chen does this by moving beyond the ebullient and larger-than-life faces evident in the Chinese modern—from political art of the mid-century to contemporary Chinese art. He conceives caricatures in multiple forms, compounding the complexity and frustration of today’s vibrant milieu.
His exhibit at Art Statements is an expansive look at his fantasy-like explorations. It is Chen’s first show outside Mainland China and represents an important milestone for an emerging voice in the Chinese contemporary culture.
The artist will be in Hong Kong from the 17th to the 19th of January, available for interview Email and telephone interviews and high res. images also available as needed. Should you have any inquires, please contact Yung Ma at Art Statements
(+852) 2122 9657