Love and marriage are the overarching themes that string together many of the works in this exhibition. Incorporating comic strips as the formal language, the artist bestows a unique sense of humor on these love stories, whether situated in Western classics or day-to-day scenarios. While the subject of courtship spans his works from 2006 to 2022—much like the artist’s obsession with depicting the same subject incessantly, one can catch a glimpse of the artist’s extreme scrutiny towards his creative process through the Rowboat series in the exhibition.
Wang Xingwei’s practice has always centered around his “thematic paintings” throughout his career. While paying attention to personal experience and mundanity, the artist integrates individual feelings with the collective memory of our time through an absurd, mischievous altitude, injecting an alluring surreality into an everyday life that one is accustomed to with his quirky and witty perception. On the other hand, his works harmoniously transform and fuse the individual with the community, the history with the present.
Wang Xingwei was born in 1969 in Shenyang, and currently lives and works in Beijing. He has been widely exhibited in China and abroad. Recent solo shows include: Wang Xingwei in Shanghai 2002 – 2008, Power Station of Art, Shanghai, China (2022); dual solo exhibitions The Code of Physiognomy and Shenyang Night held respectively at Galerie Urs Meile Beijing’s 798 space and Caochangdi Space (2019); Honor and Disgrace, Organized by Galerie Urs Meile, Beijing-Lucerne, and supported by Platform China (2016); the large retrospective Wang Xingwei, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China (2013); Wang Xingwei, held at Galerie Urs Meile Beijing in 2011 and Lucerne in 2012; and Wang Xingwei–Large Rowboat, Galerie Urs Meile, Beijing, China (2007). Group shows include: A Leisurely Stroll – The Tenth Anniversary of The Long Museum, Long Museum West Bund, Shanghai, China (2023); Uncanny Valley, Gagosian, Hong Kong, China (2023); M+ Sigg Collection: From Revolution to Globalisation, M+ Museum, Hong Kong, China (2021); Forget the Horizon, chi K11 art museum (Shanghai), Shanghai, China (2020); Chinese Whispers 中国私语 - Recent Art from the Sigg Collection, MAK Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Vienna, Austria (2019); Force as Fulcrum - Selected works from the collection of Wang Bing & Xue Bing, New Century Art Foundation, Beijing, China (2018); Art and China after 1989: Theater of the World, Museum Guggenheim, Bilbao, Spain (2018); M+ Sigg Collection: Four Decades of Chinese Contemporary Art, ArtisTree, Hong Kong, China (2016); Chinese Whispers, Kunstmuseum Bern and Zentrum Paul Klee, Berne, Switzerland (2016); DUCHAMP and/or/in CHINA, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China (2013); The State of Things–Contemporary Art from China and Belgium, National Art Museum of China, Beijing, China (2010); Mahjong: Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg Collection, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany (2006); The 1st Guangzhou Triennial, Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, China (2002); 4th Biennale d’Art Contemporain de Lyon, Lyon, France (1997).