Leo Xu Projects, Shanghai, B23
Shanghai-based Li Qing explores new roles of painting beyond mere representation, in a propaganda-heavy society where an image is complicated by the internet, mobile devices and apps. Li’s binary format—diptychs of identical pictures or views framed within a window—emancipates narratives from confines of fact, to negotiate contradictions between reality and truth.
Works on view include a new body of work from Li’s window paintings, which he began around 2013 to explore postcolonial urbanism in Shanghai. The new works take Shanghai and its name (“a sea port” in English) as a point of departure to address the notion of the sea as a transformative force in urban communication, transportation and economy, as well as the cause of both revolution and catastrophe. For the window piece, Li paints an unlikely landscape directly onto the back of a glass panel within a time-worn household window frame collected from the process of Shanghai’s gentrification. The installation transports painterly manipulation into architectural engagement, leaving narratives to unfold into broader interpretations across multiple dimensions.
A graduate and teacher at China Academy of Art, Li Qing (b. 1981, Zhejiang) has exhibited at the 9th Shanghai Biennale, Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, São Paulo Museum of Contemporary Art, and Asian Art Museum in San Francisco and other international institutions. Recent solo shows include Arario Museum, Seoul; Goethe Institute, Shanghai; Tomás y Valiente Art Centre, Madrid. Private and public collections include Deutsche Bank, Institut Valencia d’Art Modern, Valencia, Art & Culture Foundation (IAC) of Spain, Madrid, Long Museum, and Yuz Foundation, Shanghai. Li is nominated for Prix Jean-Francois Prat 2017.