Tianyuan Space Station II- Recent paintings by Li Tianyuan
Opening: April 19, 2006, 6pm to 8:30 pm
Exhibition runs through April 26, 2006


Plum Blossoms Gallery is pleased to present Li・s equally excellent paintings in oil, acrylics and mixed media.

From last year・s photography exhibition, we see Li Tianyuan・s attempts to present residual reminders of extinguishing experience and the transitions between corporeality and transparency. While in this series of paintings, which he named :Space Station; as in his photography series, Li tries to produce some quirky perceptual studies of positive and negative volumes,


creating disorienting planar landscapes that suggest both futuristic reveries of outer space and tightly controlled geometric abstraction using active brushwork and subdued hues. Deliberately open-ended, they are visual koans that call upon the viewer to discern an always-escaping meaning, challenging, likewise, subjective interpretations of place and projection.




On the surface, they resemble landscape paintings, with images of skies, horizons and mountains. Are they perhaps futuristic reveries on outer space, made from the standpoint of the self? However, when we get closer to the pictures and take a better look, we suddenly notice hard-edged traces left by masking tape. Is it a landscape that we see, or just the remaining traces of geometric shapes? The confusion created by this judgement causes the self to waver; looking at it from another angle, the self is dividing and growing, producing all kinds of different selves, selves that are like people drifting in outer space, with no fixed relationship to up or down. Determining the relationship between the .Space Station・ photographs and the .Space Station・ paintings is like trying to determine whether someone is going up or down when they are floating in space: it can only be a fruitless labour. Nevertheless, it compels us to try a different way of thinking, living and experiencing, and this is becoming our way.


Li Tianyuan, originally trained as a painter, graduated from China・s Central Academy of Fine Arts in 1988 and has since established his own studio :Tianyuan Space Station; at an artists・ village in the countryside on the outskirts of Beijing. Currently teaching at the prestigious Qinghua University (Beijing) arts program,

Li Tianyuan has exhibited previously with Beijing・s Red Gate Gallery and was included in 2004・s curated exhibition Between Past and Future: New Photography and Video from China, traveling internationally through 2006. Other recent group exhibitions include Landscape, at Xray Arts Center, Beijing (2003); Dreams and Portraits, Eastlink Gallery, Shanghai (2002); Virtual Future, Guangdong Art Museum, Guangdong (2001); Art and Science, China National Art Gallery (2001); and The Third Gender-Net Art, Beijing (2000).

Li Tianyuan's biography


Past Exhibition:
Tianyuan Space Station, New York Plum Blossoms Gallery
Tianyuan Space Station V Air, Hong Kong Plum Blossoms Gallery



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