Zhu Wei

Zhu Wei is the worlds most renowned contemporary Chinese ink painter and the art forms most important explorer. He is also among the very first group of distinguished contemporary Chinese artists recognized by the international art audience in the nineties of the 21st centuryZhu Wei was born in 1966 in Beijing, and received education in the People's Liberation Army Academy of Art, Beijing Film Academy, and China Institute of Art. Zhu Wei made his first appearance in international exhibition in 1993, and has put on more than 20 Solo exhibitions iworldwide ever since. More than eight different editions of special anthologies of his works and reviews have been published.
His ink and wash works have been collected by more than 20 domestic and foreign museums.

He devotes himself to contemporize Chinese ink and color on paper, and make it become an important integral of world contemporary art.

Exhibitions
2011
Solo Exhibition, Tobin Ohashi Gallery, Tokyo
2010
Group Exhibition, Golden Era, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Hong Kong
Group Exhibition, FACES, Leo Gallery, Shanghai
Group Exhibition, Again Print, Dialogue Space, Beijing
Group Exhibition, Art Hamptons - the international fine art fair, New York, USA
Group Exhibition, Tradition and Transition: Recent Chinese Art from the Collection, Williams College Museum of Art, Massachusetts, USA
Solo Exhibition, Zhu Wei's Solo Show, Front Line Contemporary, Shanghai
Group Exhibition, ART HK 10, Hong Kong
Group Exhibition, RESHAPING HISTORY Chinart from 2000 to 2009, China National Convention Center, Beijing
Group Exhibition, "Restoration" - Contemporary Collotype Print Exhibition, New Millennium Gallery, Beijing


Exhibitions, cont.
 
Group Exhibition, Fairy Tales - Selections from the MaGMA Collection, Singapore
2009
Group Exhibition, Art Miami 2009, Miami, USA
Group Exhibition, The Silk Road - Chinese Contemporary Lithographs, Art Scene Warehouse, Shanghai
Group Exhibition, The Academic Exhibition of Chinese Fine Arts Paintings, Art
Gallery of China National Academy of Painting, Beijing
Group Exhibition, "In Print", Dialogue Space, Beijing
Group Exhibition, "Beijing - Havana: New Contemporary Chinese Art Revolution", Cuba Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes Street Trocadero e/ Aulueta y Monserrate Old Havana, Ciudad de La Habana, Cuba
Group Exhibition, CHINESE CONTEMPORARY MASTER PRINTS EXHIBITION, Chen Ling Hui Comtemporary Space, Taipei
Group Exhibition, Scent of Ink - Group Exhibition of Chinese Contemporary Ink, Dialogue Space, Beijing
Group Exhibition, BROADSHEET NOTATIONS, Tang Contemporary Art, Hong Kong
Group Exhibition, RECOMPOSITIONS, Xin Dong Cheng Space for Contemporary Art I, 798 Art District, Beijing, China
Group Exhibition, Water and Color - Contemporary Ink Art Show, Today Art Museum, Beijing
Group Exhibition, "Best of Beijing", Melvin Art Gallery of Florida Southern College, Florida, USA
2008
Group Exhibition, Selected Exhibition Tour of Chinese Honest and Credible Galleries, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong
Group Exhibition, Selected Exhibition Tour of Chinese Honest and Credible Galleries, Today Art Museum, Beijing, China
Group Exhibition, Art Miami 2008, Miami, USA
Group Exhibition, Asian Contemporary Art Fair New York 2008, New York, USA
Solo Exhibition, Zhu Wei's Album of Ink Paintings, Xin Dong Cheng Space for Contemporary Art, 798 Art District, Beijing, China
Group Exhibition, SCOPE London Art Fair, London, UK
Group Exhibition, Art Singapore 2008, Singapore
Group Exhibition, HKIAAF 08, Hong Kong
Group Exhibition, Art Shanghai 2008, Shanghai, China
Group Exhibition, Shanghai MoCA Envisage "Butterfly Dream", Museum of Contemporary Art, Shanghai, China
Group Exhibition, Art Beijing 2008, Beijing, China
Group Exhibition, Art Taipei 2008, Taipei, Taiwan
Group Exhibition, Today's China, Museum Belvue, Brussells, Belgium
Group Exhibition, Chinese Contemporary Art, National Art Gallery, Athens, Greece
Group Exhibition, China . Beyond Socialist Realism, Chosun ilbo Museum, Seoul, Korea
Group Exhibition, NEXT . the Invitational Exhibition of Emerging Art, Art Chicago 2008, Chicago, USA
Group Exhibition, ARTPARIS, Paris, France
Group Exhibition, Consumption . Chinese Contemporary Art, Xin Dong Cheng Space For Contemporary Art (798 Art District), Beijing, China
Group Exhibition SEMIOSIS, China Square, New York, USA
Group Exhibition, ARCO, Madrid, Spain
2007
Group Exhibition, Art Basel Miami Beach, Miami, USA
Solo Exhibition, Zhu Wei Show, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Hong Kong
Solo Exhibition, J. BASTIEN ART Gallery, Brussels, Belgium
Solo Exhibition, Zhu Wei Solo Show, Art Seasons Gallery, Singapore
Solo Exhibition, Zhu Wei Solo Show, Art Seasons Gallery, Jakarta, Indonesia
Group Exhibition, Chinese Contemporary Sotsart, the State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, Russia
Group Exhibition, ANTIQUAIRS2007, Brussels, Belgium
2006
Solo Exhibition, Red Gate Gallery, Beijing
Group Exhibition, Zhu Wei, Xu Lei, Peng Wei - Three Artists' Exhibition, Art Seasons Gallery, Beijing, China
Group Exhibition, Historic Chinese Ink Painting Exhibition (1976-2006), Nanjing Museum, Nanjing, China
Group Exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, New York, USA
Group Exhibition, Melbourne International Arts Festival, Melbourne, Australia
Group Exhibition, Curators' Choice: China, Art Complex Museum, Massachusetts, USA
Group Exhibition, China International Gallery Exposition, Beijing, China
Group Exhibition, Art Beijing 2006 Expo, Beijing, China
2005
Solo exhibition, Red Curtain, Plum Blossoms Gallery Hong Kong.
Group exhibition, Food For Thought, Islip Art Museum, New York, USA.
Solo exhibition, New Pictures of The Strikingly Bizarre, Singapore Tyler Print Institute, Singapore.
Solo exhibition, New Pictures Of The Strikingly Bizarre, Plum Blossoms Gallery Hong Kong.
Group exhibition, Apologue: Chinese Contemporary Art Exhibition, Hangzhou, China
Group exhibition, Democracy Forever: Chinese Artists Perceptions of Global Politics, Plum Blossoms Gallery, New York, USA
2004
Group exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, The Seventh Regiment Armory, New York, USA.
Group exhibition, ARTSingapore 2004, Singapore.
Group exhibition, CHINA ON THE CUSP, New York, USA.
Solo exhibition, Zhu Wei . Another Perspective, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Hong Kong.
2003
Group exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, New York, USA.
Solo exhibition, Zhu Wei . Another Perspective, Plum Blossoms Gallery, New York, USA.
2002
Solo exhibition, China Diary . The Oxen, Plum Blossoms Gallery, New York, USA.
Group exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, New York, USA.
Group exhibition, Paris-Pekin, Paris, France.
Group exhibition, The First Guangzhou Triennale, Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, China.
2001
Solo exhibition, Zhu Wei Diary, Plum Blossoms Gallery, New York, USA.
Group exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, New York, USA.
Group exhibition, The Contemporary Asian Art Fair, Singapore.
2000
Solo exhibition, Zhu Wei Diary, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Group exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, The Seventh Regiment Armory, New York, USA.
1999
Group exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, The Seventh Regiment Armory, New York, USA.
Group exhibition, The Beverly Hills International Art Fair, Beverly Hills, California, USA.
1998
Group exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, New York, USA.
Solo exhibition, Diary of the Sleepwalker, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Hong Kong and Singapore.
1997
Group exhibition, The International Asian Art Fair, The Seventh Regiment Armory, New York, USA.
1996
Solo exhibition, China Diary, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Group exhibition, The Taipei International Art Fair, Taiwan, Republic of China.
1995
Group exhibition, Art Trends, Hong Kong.
Group exhibition, Art Asia '95, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center, Hong Kong.
1994
Group exhibition, New Trends Art, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center, Hong Kong.
Group exhibition, Tresors International Fine Art and Antiques Fair for Asia, World Trade Center, Singapore.
Solo exhibition, The Story of Beijing, Plum Blossoms Gallery, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Group exhibition, Art Asia '94, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center, Hong Kong.
'Zhu Wei: Utopia'
by C.B. LIDDELL (The Japan Times)



"Holidays" (No.3.) by Zhu Wei COURTESY OF TOBIN OHASHI GALLERY
The status of contemporary Chinese art often seems driven by the notion that China is projected to overtake America as the world's leading economy and superpower sometime in the future, combined with the rather naive hope that artistic freedoms will somehow spill over into wider political freedoms.

The inherent qualities of the art seem somehow secondary in this grand socio-economic-artistic narrative. That Chinese art has accrued such a political patina is enough reason to be wary of it, but among all the buzz and chatter of a preternaturally active art scene, it is still possible to find art that sidesteps the hype and exists on its own terms as the culmination of authentic artistic processes.

The color ink wash paintings of Zhu Wei are a case in point. Painted with a traditional Chinese painting technique, these have a delicate, old-fashioned charm; while their contemporary subject matter avoids kitschy evocations of the past. The individualism and character of the artist is also strongly present in the distinctive way he has managed to stylize these modern motifs - mainly slightly satirical closeups of human figures - to fit this time-honored medium.

Given the nature of his art, it is also appropriate that Zhu Wei has opted to make his Tokyo solo debut with a small, low-key show at the Tobin Ohashi Gallery. The ironically titled "Utopia" show will present four specially prepared paintings along with eight prints.

This intimate outing represents quite a contrast to the loudly-trumpeted but hugely disappointing "Ai Weiwei - According to What?" at the Mori Art Museum, which welcomed China's most renowned contemporary artist to Tokyo a couple of years ago - especially as Zhu Wei is by far the more palatable artist.



Zhu Wei - Tobin Ohashi Gallery - Tokyo
by ozgaka (ART iT)


Zhu Wei's exhibition is his first in Japan and it reveals his memories of what appears to be of officials' from Communist China. It's a strange portrayal of human beings by Zhu because none of these official Chinese party figures seem to look you in the eye; there is a kind of avoidance of it within this exhibition.

For example, there is a lithograph titled; Comrade (that actually looks like a pencil drawing because Zhu has achieved an excellent system in constructing an image with this print media) but the idea of Comrade tends to fade away because there is something more going on psychologically within the stillness of the print.

For instance, within Zhu's Comrade print there is the sensation resonating of indifference to the viewers gaze, there is not even a hint of recognition, it's like the official is lost in a day dream but even that is hard to say, it's like he exists, resigned to his fate in life, distant to everything that appears to be nothing more than living in the now, oblivious to time, trapped incognito and obedient to unseen hierarchies..

Comrade it's an interesting word but how many times does it appear to be used so flippantly in life, for when one looks at Zhu's print there is no reassurance that this official would ever treat me as a comrade, for his eyes are down cast, turned away, not engaging and fingers crisis crossed limply, as if there is no energy with the cigarette in his fingers burning/smouldering aimlessly away, echoing the futility of his existence without even a token drag on it, it's like his being is sucking the life out of you as the smoke drifts aimlessly into space only to vanish into insignificance which tends to be metaphor for him..

This exhibition brings about many questions about the Chinese societal memories of old and the new. And as one observes the other painted imagery on the walls within the gallery, there is a feeling that engaging the past is just as important as seizing the future but these figures tend to want the advancements presented in the now to be affirmative but they seem suffocated under the controls of the past.

A partial reality might be from viewing Zhu's China and its comrades is that the ongoing and unlimited challenges caused by the use of the historical characteristics of avoidance and the current mix of capitalism is a shift to something more liberal and user friendly for the common good.

On top of these complex societal Chinese painted memories that Zhu as presented in this exhibition is a very good system of painting and print making, it's a delight to examine the traces, hues and tones within his paintings, what was also surprising is that this artist makes his own paper which reveals a very intimate involvement on his part in the process of image making.