Xie Lei

Poe’s Garden, 2016
Oil on canvas
160 × 480 cm  (63 × 188.9 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Night Thoughts, 2016
Oil on canvas
22 × 27 cm  (8.6 × 10.6 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Pensive, 2016
Oil on canvas
22 × 27 cm  (8.6 × 10.6 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Mind Sweepers, 2016
Oil on canvas
100 × 80 cm  (39.3 × 31.5 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Together Around, 2016
Oil on canvas
33 × 58 cm  (12.9 × 22.8 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Sleeper, 2016
Oil on canvas
24 × 35 cm  (9.4 × 13.7 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Butterfly, 2016
Oil on canvas
33 × 24 cm (12.9 × 9.4 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Illumination, 2016
Oil on canvas
120 × 261 cm  (47.2 × 102.7 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Revelation, 2016
Oil on canvas
73 × 100 cm  (28.7 × 39.3 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Connectional, 2016
Oil on canvas
50 × 40 cm  (19.6 × 15.7 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Revert to Origin, 2016
Oil on canvas
160 × 200 cm  (63 × 78.7 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Weight of Thought, 2016
Oil on canvas
40 × 50 cm  (15.7 × 19.6 in)
Xie Lei
Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC

Born in 1983, Anhui, China
Lives and works in Paris, France

Education

2016
– PhD in Fine-Arts (Practice-based), Ecole des Beaux-Arts / Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris

2014
– Painting Research Programme, Royal College of Art, London

2010
– DNSAP (with felicitations of jury), Ecole des Beaux-Arts, Paris

2006
– BA, China Central Academy of Fine-Arts (CAFA), Beijing

Solo Exhibitions

2017
– Poe’s Garden, Z Gallery Arts, Vancouver, BC, Canada

2016
– Entre Chien et Loup, Palais des Beaux-Arts, Paris

2015
– Sans rivage, Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris

2014
– Murmur, Grenier du Chapître, Cahors / France
– Sortilège et diableries : l’inquiètant ordinaire, Château d’Ardelay, Les Herbiers / France

2013
– Xie Lei, Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris
– Everything And Nothing, FEAST Projects, Hong Kong

2012
– Chimères, Yishu 8, Beijing
– Xie Lei, Galerie Charlotte Moser, Genève

2011
– Destination, FEAST Projects, Hong Kong
– Xie Lei, Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris

2009
– Enter At Own Risk, Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris

Group Exhibitions

2016
– Utopie Picturale III, Galerie Forma, Lausanne

2014
– Memo II, White Space, Beijing
– Utopie Picturale II, Fonderie Kugler, Genève

2013
– Utopie Picturale, Villa Dutoit, Genève
– Ca grimpe?!, Galerie Charlotte Moser, Genève

2012
– 1912-2012 France – Chine, un siècle de dialogue, Yishu8, Beijing
– Visage et Portrait, Galerie Charlotte Moser, Genève
– Tranches de carrés sur tranches de cercles, Saline Royale, Arc-et-Senans / France

2011
– Résonance / Dissonance, Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris
– Le Vent d’après, (curator Jean de Loisy), Ecole des Beaux-Arts, Paris

2010
– Ligne de Chance, Fondation Ricard, Paris

2008
– Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris
– Shcontemporary, Marlborough Gallery, Shanghai
– Institut de France, Paris
– Marlborough Gallery, New York
– Galerie Serge Aboukrat, Paris
– Salon de Montrouge, Montrouge / France

2007
– Galerie Serge Aboukrat, Paris

2006
– Shi Tang Arts Space, Beijing

Grants

2012
– Prix Alphonse Cellier

2011
– Prix Nicolas Feuillate

2010
– Bourse de la Mairie de Paris pour l’art contemporain

2008
– Bourse Colin-Lefrancq, Hunter College, New York

2003
– Drawing Award CAFA

Catalogues

2014
– Murmur, Les Rencontres d’Art Contemporain, text by Guitemie Maldonado

2013
– XIE LEI, galerie Anne de Villepoix, text by François-René Martin

2012
– XIE LEI – Chimères, Yishu8, text by Henry-Claude Cousseau, Liang Shuhan, Emmanuel Fessy
– Tranches de carrés sur tranches de cercles, Saline Royale d’Arc-et-Senans, text by Pauline Lafille
– XIE LEI, galerie Charlotte Moser

2011
– Destination, FEAST Projects, text by Philippe Koutouzis
– XIE LEI, galerie Anne de Villepoix
– Le Vent d’après, Beaux-Arts de Paris, text by Jean de Loisy

2010
– Ligne de Chance, Fondation Ricard and Beaux-Arts de Paris

2008
– Salon de Montrouge

Press

2015
– LeJournaldesArts.fr, 26 October, “Les visions hallucinées de Xie Lei” by Pauline Vidal

2014
– Asian Art, February 2014, Profile 2-5, by Olivia Sand
– Elephant Magazine, Issue 19, summer 2014, p.6

2013
– Le Journal des Arts, N° 398, 4-17 October, p.31, “La peinture Onirique de Xie Lei” by Pauline Vidal
– Le Monde, N°21361, 22-23 September, p.12, by Philippe Dagen
– FAZ, 27 September, by Bettina Wohlfarth

2012
– Time Out Beijing, 09 November, p.75, “Hidden Current” by Liu Shiyao
– Gallery, November Issue, “Xie Lei: New Communication And Allure” by Yue Lian
– Contemporary Art, December Issue, “Xie Lei: Double re-interpretation of east and west tradition” by Chen Hongming
– Master Oriental Art, December Issue, p.18, “Xie Lei in Yishu8” by Xu Nan
– Hi Art, 22 October, “Xie Lei pay tribute to masters in ‘Chimères’ ” by Tian Tian
– Beijing Review, 23 October, “Chimères: Xie Lei in Yishu8” by Yang Jiaqing
– Jinghua Newspaper, 23 October, “Xie Lei solo” by Xu Qinghong
– Xin Hua News Daily, 23 October, “Xie Lei, Chinese artist in France” by Zhang Shuqi
– China Art Newspaper, N° 1215, 20 October, “Xie Lei debut in Yishu8” by Xiong Ying

2011
– Connaissance des Arts, February N°690, p.104 “l’artiste du mois: le monde surnaturel de Xie Lei” by Valérie de Maulmin
– A Nous, 4 July, p.24, “Espoirs – Le Vent d’après” by Sonia Desprez
– Splux, December, p.64-65, “Destination” by Monica Lau
– The Art Economist, Issue 9, p.67, “Xie Lei, artist to watch” by Bruce Helander
– Le Figaro, 14 February, by Valérie Duponchelle

Out of a Whirlwind

Liang Shuhan

Elephant

Issue 19 – Summer 2014

From Dreams to Fables

Henry-Claude Cousseau

Incandescences

Guitemie Maldonado

POE’S GARDEN | XIE LEI

 

On View: Jan. 28th – Mar. 31st 2017
Artist Reception: Saturday Jan. 28th 2017, 6PM – 9PM
Gallery Hours: Tue – Sat 10AM – 5PM And by appointment
102 – 1688 West 1st Avenue, Vancouver, BC Canada V6J 1G1

 

poes-garden2016oil_on_canvas160x480cm

Poe’s Garden, 2016, oil on canvas
63 × 188.9 in

 

Z Gallery Arts is delighted to present Xie Lei’s first solo show in Vancouver and in Canada. The young and very promising Chinese artist will exhibit twelve paintings that he specially made for this exhibition.

 

Xie Lei uses a fiery imagination to coalesce various cultures – the Chinese and Western ones – in a truly unique manner. Neither a strictly figurative nor abstract painter, he jostles the classical codes of representation. His sensibility, his subtlety and acuity invite us to cast a different glance at our world.

 

His tenacity and his education started this process. The solid training he received at China Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA) in Beijing gave him the means to fully master painting techniques. His brushstroke can be delicate, transparent or thickly textured, and his color choice – often monochromatic – is intense. Xie Lei’s paintings, large or small, demonstrate how well the artist can use the medium to connect with today’s viewers despite the multitude of digital images that global and instant communication produce, and that threaten to drown us. His studies, first at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris (ENSBA) where he graduated with Honors, then at Hunter College (New York) and finally at the Royal College of Art (London), strengthened his determination to create a truly personal body of work. In Paris, in April 2016, he enrolled in a practice-based PhD, a new research program jointly established by the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Education and became the first ENSBA student to receive the title of Dr. in Visual Arts with Honors. The title of his thesis was « Entre Chien et Loup. Poétique de l’Etrange pour un Peintre d’Aujourd’hui » (“Between Wolf and Dog – Poetry of the Strange for a Painter of Today”).

 

Poe’s Garden, which is both the exhibition title and the name for the largest format he has ever painted (63 × 188.9 in), reflects the confluence of the cultures he came across. The works of Pu Songling, Borges and Edgar Allan Poe where the fantastic and the surreal always introduce a new way to envision reality, nurtured Xie Lei’s imagination. An often desolate and fearsome nature plays an important part in Poe’s tales, particularly in the three that Baudelaire translated, and perhaps more so than in the texts of the two other writers. Xie Lei gives us a monumental landscape where hands or perhaps flowers burst out of a scorched field. At first glance, the painting appears to be very dark, only filled with an austere black when it is actually made of a combination of multiple shades of purple and green. But then the eye is drawn to the red and orange motifs that shimmer on the canvas. The triptyque could remind us of Monet’s Nymphéas, but Poe’s Garden was not painted outside and does not attempt to be a faithful rendition of reality – it is a mental landscape. It would be better echoed by Richard Serra’s sculptures – these immense sheets of steel attacked by rust.

 

Revert to Origin, another large format is an allegory based on Chinese philosophy and on the importance it gives to reincarnation. The style is clean, and the simple brushstroke alludes to leaves being leisurely moved by a breeze: time is suspended; the colors, like the leaves, are shades of copper; the landscape is abstract, supernatural: 落叶归根 Falling leaves return to their roots.

The exhibition’s medium and small formats evoke vignettes of life, snapshots in which imagination transforms reality, where the mundane becomes extraordinary and even intriguing. Other works allude to the search for the meaning of life, for identity and to the sense of vulnerability that we may all experience. Some paintings could remind us of current affairs, but the artist distrusts immediacy and prefers to keep his distance. He will not exploit tragic situations or deliver a direct message. The semantic field widens and each painting reveals the ambiguity, the duality and the antagonism that lie at the heart of any situation. Xie Lei uses painting to tell without telling.

 

Xie Lei was born in 1983 in Anhui Province and now works and lives in Paris where the Galerie Anne de Villepoix regularly organizes solo shows of his work. Xie Lei had a solo show at the Galerie Charlotte Moser in Geneva in 2012, two in 2011 and 2013 at Feasts Projects in Hong Kong and one in 2012 at the Fondation Yishu 8 in Beijing. The Marlborough Gallery showed his work in New York in 2008. French public institutions organized solo shows of his work at Château d’Ardelay in Herbiers (2014), Les Rencontres d’Art Contemporain in Cahors (2014), the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Paris (2016). In 2010 he participated in a group show at the Fondation Ricard and, in 2012, at the Saline Royale in Arc-et-Senans. His works are now part of private collections in Europe (particularly in France) and in China.

 

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