Wang Shugang’s figure sculptures At The Opposite House
Wang Shugang’s figure sculptures At The Opposite House
(Beijing, January 2011) - RedBox Studio in partnership with ALEXANDER OCHS GALLERIES BERLIN│BEIJING and in collaboration with The Opposite House Beijing is pleased to present an installation of figure sculptures by Wang Shugang at the atrium of The Opposite House. Wang is an accomplished Beijing-based artist who returned to China in 2000 after developing his career for over a decade in Germany.
As a graduate of the prestigious Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, Wang demonstrates an exceptional command of the traditional medium in his sculptures, combining the figuration of 20th century Realism with Buddhist iconography and scenes of daily life in China. His signature motif is to present groups of anonymous figures that comment on the essential relationship of the individual to his the society around him. This motif is expressed through such seemingly ordinary actions as the monk sweeping the floor, the meditating lama or the standing Qi Gong layman and the squatting bald man. The conflict between tradition and modernity and the palpable loss of history and culture in the midst of rapid urbanization and artificial mass production often result in themes of nostalgia and reflection for Wang and his contemporaries. His figurative work, strengthened when viewed en masse, displays a rich expression of the sense of community and—when displayed in an urban landscape—provides a playful reflection on the quiet moments of daily life in China.
“Wang Shugang is one of the few contemporary Chinese sculptors who successfully capture an expression of the everyday in China with a playful approach to the mundane,” says Katherine Don, Director, RedBox Studio, “and his works extend past the art world to encompass living Chinese history.”
In 2008, The Opposite House began its collaboration with contemporary Chinese art galleries in Beijing, showcasing the works of up and coming young artists as well as established pioneers of the contemporary Chinese art scene. The six-storey high atrium exhibition space serves as a platform to share and increase interaction between people and art.
These stout bronze figures give our space a different dynamic, adding a cheeky element with the placement of old Beijing characters in our sleek contemporary space, in a way representative of how post-Olympics Beijing has evolved,” says Anthony Ross, General Manager.
Wang Shugang (b. 1960) currently lives and works in Beijing. His works have been widely exhibited between China, America and Europe and are publicly displayed in China, Germany and Canada.
RedBox Studio (est. 2005) is a Beijing-based art advisory specializing in the promotion of contemporary art in China. Composed of experienced, bilingual professionals with an extensive knowledge of contemporary Chinese art, we work with artists, private collectors and institutions to facilitate acquisitions, organize exhibitions, initiate art programs, and design and publish art publications. We work closely with our clients to provide a bespoke experience and in‐ depth education about the arts in China, while providing access to our international network of artists, galleries and institutions. We pursue all of our activities and initiatives in order to serve as a bridge for cultural exchange and to foster art appreciation for contemporary Chinese art.
Founded by former New York gallery directors, Katherine Don and George Chang have been actively involved in the promotion of contemporary art for over ten years in Beijing and New York. Past curatorial projects include “Peng Wei’s painting installation” at The Opposite House, Sanlitun (2010) and introductions of artists to the West that included Xu Lei, Zhu Wei, Ji Dachun, and Qiu Xiaofei. They recently curated the first international exhibition of the Columbia University Neiman Print Studies Center collection at the Today Art Museum, Beijing, which included works by artists Kara Walker, Kiki Smith and William Kentridge.
ALEXANDER OCHS GALLERIES BERLIN│BEIJING
The gallery was founded 1997 in Berlin - Mitte with a special focus on Asian, mostly Chinese Contemporary art. Since 2008, the gallery represents international European artists in exhibitions and external projects. After having held galleries in Shanghai (2002/2003) and 798 Beijing (2004-2008), Ochs opened a new space in May 2009 in Caochangdi Art District, which has 1000 m2 large exhibition space. Ochs also started an artist-in-residence programme in a separate studio house in Caochangdi. The studio is available for the European artists in connection with their solo exhibitions.
About Swire Hotels
Swire Hotels has been created to manage intriguing urban hotels in Hong Kong, Mainland China and the United Kingdom, providing a characterful experience for travellers who seek individuality, style and personalised service.
The Opposite House, Beijing, opened in 2008 and was followed by The Upper House, above Pacific Place, Hong Kong, in October 2009.
Swire Hotels opened a 345-room lifestyle business hotel called EAST, Hong Kong in Hong Kong’s Island East, on 25 January 2010. EAST, Beijing with 369 rooms, located within INDIGO in Jiangtai, will open in 2012.
Swire Hotels is creating a new collection of locally inspired and stylish hotels in the heart of great English towns and cities called Chapter Hotels. The first hotel in the collection, the Montpellier Chapter, will be launched in Q4 2010 in Cheltenham.
About The Opposite House
The Opposite House is located in Sanlitun Village—a vibrant new open-plan shopping, dining and entertainment destination developed by Swire Properties. The hotel’s 99 guest studios includes 9 spacious suites and a penthouse duplex with a 240sqm roof terrace. More than half of all the studios are over 70 sqm and all are strikingly simple with natural wooden floors and subtle touches of Chinese décor.
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About Sanlitun Village
Sanlitun Village, located at the junction of the Worker’s Stadium North Road and Sanlitun Road in Chaoyang District, Beijing, comprising two sites with a total site area of approximately 53,000 sqm (over 566,000 sq ft), and a total floor area of over 136,000 sqm (approximately 1.47 million sq ft)* spreading over 19 buildings, including a 99-room intriguing urban hotel, The Opposite House.
Built around the bustling hutongs of Sanlitun, taking inspiration from the courtyards and alleyways of Beijing's past and mixing it with its more worldly cosmopolitan present, the development will include over 200 shops, plus cafes, restaurants and bars, an eight-screen MEGABOX cinema, a unique cultural entertainment space and parking for more than 800 cars. For more details, please go to our official website: www.sanlitunvillage.com
The retail portions of Sanlitun Village are jointly owned by Swire Properties and Gateway China Fund I, with Swire Properties holding an 80% stake and Gateway China Fund I taking the remaining 20%, while the hotel is wholly-owned by Swire Properties.