The History of Eternity: Forty Years of Mao Xuhui 1980-2021

Curator: Dai Zhuoqun

7.10 - 8.26, 2021

Beijing 1st & 2nd Space

 
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Tang Contemporary Art Beijing is delighted to present “The History of Eternity: Forty Years of Mao Xuhui 1980-2021” on July 10, 2021, the largest-scale solo exhibition for the artist to date, across both of its Beijing spaces. This exhibition has been several years in the making, and it is his most comprehensive solo show since “Mao Xuhui: Will” was presented at Tang Contemporary Art Hong Kong in early 2020.

 

This retrospective was curated by Dai Zhuoqun, who chose more than 200 works in a range of media, including oil on canvas, paper, and wood, ink on paper, drawing, and mixed media on canvas from every period in Mao’s artistic career. Based on Mao’s content or style in different eras, the show is arranged into four sections: “Life / Representation,” “Power / Parents,” “Will / Scissors,” and “Mount Gui / Sketching.” The exhibition attempts to showcase Mao Xuhui’s tireless creativity over the last forty years from as many perspectives as possible.

Mao Xuhui: Life Painting, Will, and Eternity

Dai Zhuoqun

Mao Xuhui has left a distinct personal imprint on the art world at two key moments in early Chinese avant-garde art. The first moment was from 1985 to 1989; he founded the Southwestern Art Research Group focused on new figurative painting in Kunming. He also organized several editions of the “New Figurative Painting Exhibition,” which became an important part of the ’85 New Wave, an avant-garde contemporary art movement in China. In 1986, Mao represented the “New Figurative Painting Exhibition” at the Zhuhai Conference, and in 1988, he attended the Huangshan Conference and submitted an article entitled “Artistic Issues are Human Issues.” The artistic ambitions of this period were constantly changing, and Mao had to find something meaningful in the chaos; in his paintings, he tended to depict his personal awakening and the intense vitality of southwestern China. In 1989, Mao Xuhui participated in “China/Avant-Garde” as a representative of “life painting.” His work was subsequently shown in a series of new art exhibitions held around the world related to China’s New Wave and avant-garde movements.

 

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A Red Fallen Backrest Chair

A Red Fallen Backrest Chair

Acrylic on canvas 180 × 250 cm 2011

Glossary Of Power: The File Cabinet

Glossary Of Power: The File Cabinet

Watercolor on paper 28 × 20 cm 1993

Sketch in Guishan: Walnut Trees in Autumn, No.2

Sketch in Guishan: Walnut Trees in Autumn, No.2

Oil on canvas 70 × 90 cm 2011

The Basic Position

The Basic Position

Watercolor on paper 20 x 28 cm 1993

Red-billed Gulls Back to Yunnan

Red-billed Gulls Back to Yunnan

Acrylic on canvas 200 x 300 cm 2013

Red High-backed Chair

Red High-backed Chair

Oil on canvas 195 x 195 cm 2010

Guishan Series: Grace of the Red Earth—Green Branches in Spring

Guishan Series: Grace of the Red Earth—Green Branches in Spring

Oil on canvas 80 x 120 cm 1987

Sketch in Guishan: Red Earth Road

Sketch in Guishan: Red Earth Road

Oil on canvas 60 x 81 cm 2006

A Quarter of a Pair of Sloping Red Scissors

A Quarter of a Pair of Sloping Red Scissors

Oil on canvas 130 x 180 cm 2001

Parent Series: Great Yellow Bell

Parent Series: Great Yellow Bell

Oil on canvas 139 x 112 cm 1991

Blue Scissors and Residential Community

Blue Scissors and Residential Community

Oil on canvas 180 x 150 cm 1997

Guishan:  Mother and Daughter

Guishan: Mother and Daughter

Oil on paper 53 x 77 cm 1987

Guishan in March

Guishan in March

Oil on canvas 90 x 100 cm 1986

Drinking Tea

Drinking Tea

Oil on canvas 62 x 110 cm 1981

A Red Nude

A Red Nude

Oil on board 48 x 100 cm 1984

Sketch in Guishan

Sketch in Guishan

Oil on board 43 x 55 cm 1982

Scissors Jungle: No Where to Hide

Scissors Jungle: No Where to Hide

Acrylic on canvas 220 x 300 cm 2016

Scissors are Together with Your Loneliness

Scissors are Together with Your Loneliness

Oil on canvas 120 x 145 cm 1996

Kunming Series: Old House

Kunming Series: Old House

Acrylic on canvas 180 x 220 cm 2012

Parents

Parents

Oil on canvas 87 x 110 cm 1988

 
Curator
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Dai Zhuoqun

 

Dai Zhuoqun, independent curator, art critic, lives and works in Beijing.

 

He was the founder of Contemporary Art Magazine in 2007, served as editor and art director. In 2009, Dai launched and jointly organized the "Warm Winter Plan"--Beijing safeguard art rights, which became one of the most significant art events in recent years. He cooperates with a number of art institutions, colleges and Museums of fine arts, planning exhibitions and giving lectures. Meanwhile, he frequently writes for domestic and international professional journals and publications.

 

The exhibitions he curated includes:  "The Awakening of Things”, "Superfluous Things" series projects, "Civilization" series projects, “Brushwork and True Feeling”, ”Approach Spirits”, ”Free Prism Video Wave”,“ The Circular impact: Video Art 21”.

Artist
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​Mao Xuhui

b.1956, Chongqing, China

 

He has been living in Kunming with parents since 1956, and graduated from the Yunnan Art Academy in 1982. Mao Xuhui is an iconic artist in Chinese contemporary art history. He is one of the figures in China Art Power 100 and the leader of the avant-garde community in southwest China in the 1980s. Between 1985 and 1989, he brought together a host of young artists mostly from Yunnan and Sichuan under the banner of “New Figurative” to form the Southwest Art Research Group, whose members represented and celebrated in their paintings such intense life awareness typical of the southwestern regions of China that the group came to represent a significant part of the ’85 New Wave, a vanguard movement of contemporary Chinese art. These achievements have earned him a crucial position in Chinese contemporary art history.

 

Mao Xuhui has widely exhibited in Euro-pan-Asian cities, including Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong, Singapore, New York, San Francisco, Barcelona, Bologne, Paris, and London. His artworks are included in many influential exhibitions, for example, the milestone exhibition in Chinese contemporary art history, Inside Out: New Chinese Art (1998) co-organized by Asia Society New York, Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco and Hong Kong Museum of Art. His works have been collected by prominent domestic and international galleries and museums, publicized worldwide by news media, and published in art history books and academic journals.

 
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