TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Art Basel Hong Kong 2019 is kicking off on Mar. 29 while Eslite Gallery (誠品畫廊) in Taiwan is going to present the works of China’s contemporary artist Liu Xiaodong (劉小東) at booth 1D12.
Eslite Gallery will present a booth dedicated to China’s foremost contemporary artist Liu Xiaodong, featuring nearly 30 canvas works, watercolors, print series and works on paper, made over the last decade.
Many are new works that the artist created especially for the event, which have been inspired by the basic necessities of life and as a testimonial to the artist’s fondness for life’s simple blessings.
Vegetables, fruits, and daily sustenance are the main themes for the artist's latest series which is inspired by the Chinese poet Haizi’s (海子) moving works. One of Haizi's poems notes, "From tomorrow on, I will appreciate my food and greens; My house faces the vast ocean, where spring is warm and flowers bloom."
Reflecting on the poem's message, Liu’s works convey the same idea of counting our blessings and reducing worldly wants to a bare minimum, because in doing so, life shall be free of hassles.
Liu's work Persimmons in My Yard (image from Eslite Gallery)
According to Eslite Gallery, as other artists of Liu's generation turn away from more traditional forms of painting, he continues to capture the realism of life and his technique has matured into “slack expressionism” where a sense of immediacy and familiarity permeates throughout his paintings, further accentuated by his disinterested interpretation of the subject matter; this familiarity becomes the basis of a dialogue between artist and viewer.
Some of Liu's previous works will be shown alongside the new works. Some older pieces are from the “Hometown Boy” series, which depicts landscapes and people in his hometown of Jincheng (錦州市); while others convey his observations of different places, such as a large-scale painting of wealthy Chinese ladies in Indonesia, or a watercolor work that vividly captures South African wildlife.
By bringing together works of varied subjects and forms, the core of Liu's art unfolds, from the essence of simple things, then gradually expands to a greater rumination on social meaning. For more information, please go to Eslite Gallery.