The first major Chinese solo exhibition by British artist Julian Opie in collaboration with Fosun Foundation is to be presented in March 2017. The exhibition will be the held at the new Fosun Foundation building, co-designed by Foster + Partners and Heatherwick Studio, located in the Bund Financial Center (BFC) in Shanghai.
The show covers two floors of the Fosun Foundation, featuring over 50 works, many made especially for the exhibition, including paintings, sculptures, mosaics, tapestries, wall drawings and LED and LCD films.
With public commissions from Seoul to New York, Luxembourg to Zurich and an uninterrupted flow of large museum exhibitions internationally, the work of Julian Opie is known throughout the world. Opie’s distinctive formal language is instantly recognisable and reflects his artistic preoccupation with the idea of representation, and the means by which images are perceived and understood.
“Everything you see is a trick of the light.” Opie writes. “Light bouncing into your eye, light casting shadows, creating depth, shapes, colours. Turn off the light and it’s all gone. We use vision as a means of survival and it’s essential to take it for granted in order to function, but awareness allows us to look at looking and by extension look at ourselves and be aware of our presence. Drawing, drawing out the way that process feels and works brings the awareness into the present and into the real world, the exterior world.”
Always exploring different techniques both cutting edge and ancient, Opie plays with ways of seeing through reinterpreting the vocabulary of everyday life; his reductive style evokes both a visual and spatial experience of the world around us. Taking influence from classical portraiture, Egyptian hieroglyphs and Japanese woodblock prints, as well as public signage, information boards, and traffic signs, the artist connects the clean visual language of modern life, with the fundamentals of art history.
Julian Opie was born in London in 1958 and lives and works in London. He graduated from Goldsmith’s School of Art, London in 1982. Solo exhibitions include Kunsthalle Helsinki, Finland (2015); Museum of Contemporary Art Krakow (MoCAK), Poland (2014); National Portrait Gallery, London, UK (2011); IVAM, Valencia, Spain (2010); MAK, Vienna, Austria (2008); CAC Malaga, Spain (2006); Neues Museum, Nuremberg, Germany (2003); Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, UK (2001); Kunstverein Hannover, Germany (1994) and Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, UK (1985). Major group exhibitions include the Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK (2016), Barbican Art Gallery, London, UK (2014), Tate Britain, London, UK (2013), the Shanghai Biennale (2006), 11th Biennial of Sydney (1998), Documenta 8, Kassel, Germany (1987) and XIIème Biennale de Paris (1985). His public projects include works for hospitals, such as Barts & the London Hospital (2003) and the Lindo Wing, St Mary’s Hospital, London (2012), Heathrow Terminal 1 (1998), the prison Wormwood Scrubs, London (1994) and his design for the band Blur’s album (2000), for which he was awarded the Music Week CADS for Best Illustration in 2001. Opie’s work is held in many major museum collections including the Arts Council, England; British Museum, London, UK; Carnegie Museum, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; IVAM Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, USA; MoMAT Tokyo, Japan; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia; National Portrait Gallery, London, UK; Städtische Galerie in Lenbachhaus, Munich, Germany; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands; Tate Collection, London, UK and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK.
Photo: P C Robinson © Artlyst 2016