Announcing representation of Zhao Gang
2 November 2023
Lisson Gallery is pleased to announce representation of Chinese artist Zhao Gang. Born in Beijing, Zhao now works and lives between Beijing and New York. Lisson Gallery will present Zhao’s work for the first time at the 2023 edition of West Bund Art & Design in Shanghai, followed by his first presentation with the gallery in May 2024 in Beijing.
At the age of 18, Zhao became the youngest member of the avant-garde movement known as the ‘Star Group’, heralding the development of contemporary art in China. Zhao’s work delves into the fluidity of individual identities, the clash of cultures, and the intricate interplay of fragmented historical events. His works are deeply rooted in a rich and nuanced cultural heritage, drawing inspiration from both classical and contemporary Western and Chinese influences. Within his work, patterns and concepts gracefully unfurl, expertly deconstructing visual narratives. Driven by a pursuit of artistic and political freedom, Zhao laid the foundational stones of contemporary Chinese art. Zhao’s artistic style is characterised by audacious and almost exaggerated narratives and painterly techniques. His work serves as a defiant stance against the prevailing trend of artistic refinement, celebrating the unfettered freedom and authenticity inherent in painting.
Zhao’s experience of studying abroad and living overseas since 1983 has given his work a unique and diverse style, with distinctive international characteristics. Upon returning to Beijing in around 2006, Zhao redirected his focus to the intricate interplay between his cross-cultural experiences and the annals of Chinese history. Born in China, yet traversing the path of an immigrant, he continues to grapple with the sentiment of estrangement that threads through his art.
Zhao attended the Maastricht Institute of Arts (formerly Stadsacademie voor Toegepaste Kunsten) in The Netherlands (1983), and Vassar College, New York (1984-1987). He obtained a Master of Arts degree from Bard College, New York in 1999. Zhao has held solo exhibitions at various institutions, including the Long Museum (Chongqing Branch), Chongqing, China (2022); Long Museum (West Bund Branch), Shanghai, China (2021); Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei (2020); Pérez Art Museum, Miami, FL, USA (2019); Museum of Contemporary Art, Santiago, Chile (2016); Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China (2015); Suzhou Museum, Suzhou, China (2015); Today Art Museum, Beijing, China (2011); Hong Kong Arts Centre, Hong Kong, China (2008); and He Xiangning Art Museum, Shenzhen, China (2006), among others. His works have also been featured in numerous group exhibitions, including the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY, USA (2017); Beijing Minsheng Art Museum, Beijing, China (2015); OCAT Contemporary Art Terminal (Xi'an Branch), Xi'an, China (2014); Guangzhou Triennial (2008); Performa Biennial, New York, NY, USA (2007); and Yokohama Triennale, Japan (2005).