It’s been a while but here is another collaborative post written by our friend JJ at thewanderlister, the show in question finishes on the 11th May so if you’re in town over this weekend it’s definitely worth a visit!
If a gallery was a pop-indie-R&B-electronic music promoter whose sole purpose was to import the best in edgy yet mature acts in the world to Hong Kong today, then one can single out Paris/Hong Kong based Galerie Perrotin as that kind of gallery.
I say this not as a critique but an observation based on the current and last few exhibits since the gallery opened in its beautiful 50 Connaught Road space. Exhibitions that aren’t necessarily ”POP” as much as they are “Populist” are extracted from graphic and illustrative cultures of our time, magnified, amplified, choreographed, and exhibited in a nice neat package in the gallery’s light filled space. They’re edgy, but consumable, presented in a nice package like a new CD by the XX or M.I.A. for example. Exhibitions in 2012 by Peter Zimmermann, JR, KAWS, Aya Takano, Bharti Kher, and Farhad Moshiri would fall into these categories. There have been more open ended shows, however, like works in progress or studies by Lionel Esteve and Jin Meyerson. The exhibitions have been fun, bold, and perfect for an Asian audience (maybe the young ones) still focused on refining their curatorial palette.
However as Pop-indie acts go, part of what always makes them relevant is their ability to use digital information and technology to extract visual resources (ever available with google search and a click of the mouse) from the past to the present, then remixed, packaged, and then presented. This remix of visual culture via the technological filter is what the latest solo exhibitions at Galerie Perrotin Hong Kong are all about with two shows by the Philippine’s Ronald Ventura (pictured below) and Belgium’s Wim Delvoye (pictured above).
Exhibited separately in one big space with no curatorial connection between the two, Ventura and Delvoye exhibit works fit for a religious spaces but with a twist. Ventura’s paintings reflect Baroque formal compositions and dutch techniques (playing on light), while Delvoye’s silver sculptures are indeed Baroque-esque in the layers of information, detail, and the way all these are flattened with a play on perspective and drama. Overall the works presented here are grand in gesture, and exaggerated in motion and drama, everything that the Roman Catholic Church just loves. In the 1600s Baroque works aimed to communicate the divinity on speed, but in today’s digital age, is the excess of information a divine gift of which to create?
Ronald Ventura’s fantastical paintings of smoking skulls, sea creatures, monsters, amid Angry Birds (an iOS game app) and BEATS by Dr. Dre Headphones, within bird cages (a thematic trope to put it all together), for Ventura, an aim to materialize his fantasies. His paintings are way for us to see what he sees. Ventura’s work begins with several sketches, then scanned, and remixed on photoshop (with presumably some other visual references from online), and then painted. Compared to Ventura’s other works in the past, the exhibition, titled Voids and Cages, is some of his most mature work yet, and thematically more global than it is regional.
Meanwhile works here by Wim Delvoye is an extension of his show from The Louvre in 2012 which took two years to produce. Unlike Ventura who works alone, Delvoye employes a studio to help him craft together his intricate sculptures, like the “Twisted Dump Truck” pictured above, modeled in a 3D computer program, then laser-cut piece by piece and assembled in Stainless Steel. This and the mirrored bronze sculptures which reflect Rorschach plates, give a sense of work truly in motion. Whats more, the sculptures look like they were gestured by a paint brush, as if Baroque works were actually transitioning from one kind of composition to another one. It is… pretty cool.
These shows will be on exhibit at Galerie Perrotin Hong Kong until 11 May 2013. Click below to see more from the show and details on where to see it.