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Xie Lei

This exhibition showing twenty or so of the recent paitings Xie Lei produced during his stay at Yishu 8 last summer could have been entitled « Coming back ». Less than ten years after he left Beijing (2006), it is indeed the first time that Xie Lei has had the opportunity to show his work in his home country’s capital, and he does so using « chimera » as his theme. In Greek mythology, the word chimera stands for a being, often a threatening hybrid animal.

It is in a similarly antinomic context – enfused with a dream-like quality that can often be disquieting - that in the past few years Xie Lei has developed a body of work that relies on the fascination created by images, and that is expressed through a brilliant pictural technique in which the painter’s strokes engage in a dialogue with color, creating a language that emancipates the various meanings contained by a given image.

It is easy to guess the part semantic considerations play - thanks to the importance given to titles. Yet, the perpetual back and forth between humor and gravitas, between malice and compassion, which is the essential trademark of Xie Lei’s practice, gives his often allegorical work a welcome lightheartedness.

Perhaps because of their contrasting formats these recent paintings play with great virtuosity with the canvas space, and display an increasingly meticulous depiction of the artists’ preoccupations – human rituals, the obsessive proximity of death, the threat of catastrophes, the miseries inherent to contemporary life, the environment’s fragility, the tutelary presence of the Masters from the Past... These preoccupations are expressed through unusual chromatic schemes that use a wide range of purples, of midnight blues or of green blues, of ochres marvellously tinted with saffron, and for the first time, of whites.

Xie Lei, who until recently liked to evoke Borges’ « Ficciones » as his source of inspiration, has entered even more deeply into the chimerical world of imagination with this new series.

Henry-Claude Cousseau, Exhibition curator

CONTACT

Yishu 8
Former Sino-French University, 
N°20 (jia), Dong Huangchenggen Bei Jie, Dongcheng district, Beijing 100010
北京市 东城区东皇城根北街甲20号
(原中法大学) 
 
Tel : +8610 6581 9058
 

找到我们

Yishu 8
Former Sino-French University, 
N°20 (jia), Dong Huangchenggen Bei Jie, Dongcheng district, Beijing 100010
北京市 东城区东皇城根北街甲20号
(原中法大学) 
 
Tel : +8610 6581 9058
 

CONTACT

Yishu 8
Former Sino-French University, 
N°20 (jia), Dong Huangchenggen Bei Jie, Dongcheng district, Beijing 100010
北京市 东城区东皇城根北街甲20号
(原中法大学) 
 
Tel : +8610 6581 9058
 

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