A Curated Solo Exhibition
Oct. 21st- Nov. 14th, 2021
Exhibition press release
(For immediate release)
Opening Reception: Oct. 21st, 2021, 6pm- 8 pm
Location: 64A Bayard Street, New York, NY 10013
Hours: Tue.-Sat. 11am- 5pm, Sunday 12 am- 5pm
LATITUDE Gallery New York is pleased to present an exhibition of works by contemporary Chinese artist Ma Ye. Gathered four oil paintings on canvas and three sculptures, the exhibition focuses on the artist’s use of Chinese traditional scenery paintings and dramatic figures through a lens of romance, in exploration of the history and reality, the lost, the remains, and emotional sensibility. On view at 64A Bayard Street from October 21st through November 15th, 2021, the artist’s first solo show with LATITUDE Gallery in New York.
The paintings in the exhibition, created after the year 2000, build on the history of Ma Ye’s personal artist practice and his prolonged interest in anthro-landscape, also referred to as Chinese cultural landscape imagery with social commentary. Similar to the artist’s other figurative portraits, such as the Who is She series, employing the male-gaze perspective as baits, China Scenery lures the audiences into the endless game of contemplating on genders, feminism, and powers. In this series, upon the capture of audiences, Ma Ye, then, introduces his deepest introspection on his Chinese identity and reality.
In this collection of works, a novel compositional dynamic has emerged through the traditional figures and sceneries. Ma Ye always has his unique way to paint, with different painting languages such as borrowing traditional Chinese ink painting and temperament outlook. By formulating and duplicating a generic female character, he puts his artistic vision to the discordance and unity between subjectivity versus objectivity, history versus reality, and individuality versus conformity. In his paintings, the romantic and playful young women are not only the lure to catch the eyeballs but embodiments of Ma Ye's vision in the public nature of Chinese society and humanity.
As the figures drift upon the canvas, balance on exquisite Chinese landscapes, and float around the Great Wall, projecting the sense of isolation and alienation from their environments, a powerful contradiction, as well as confusions and irony, develops. While the Great Wall and the Tiananmen Square stand as dream-like scenes holding their nostalgic and memorable values, the figures are wearing the color of naive and teasing. Dressing the characters with traditional clothings and naive but psychotic expressions, the artist intensifies the alienation towards Chinese people in vast changes and development. In this show, under the sarcastic tone and melancholy atmosphere, Ma Ye continues his dialog to expand the ambiguity of the traditional landscapes and figurative paintings within the context of Chinese society in the past decades. Stripping the works' chicanery, the technical and figurative composition of the works gives the artist a prolific chance to render his version of the athro-landscape that was heavily changed by the rapidly developed technology and society.
Ma Ye (b. 1964, Shanxi, China) graduated from Xi'an Academy of Fine Arts in 1988. In 1993, he went to Yuan Ming Yan (Old Summer Palace) Artist Village in Beijing as a professional painter and has been engaged in avant-garde art scene ever since. He is a typical yet atypical Yuanmingyuan artist and Songzhuang artist.
LATITUDE Gallery New York
LATITUDE Gallery New York, founded in early 2020 by artist Shihui Zhou (b. China, 1991), is an art space and curatorial platform with a non-exclusive focus on artists of Asian descent, organizing exhibitions and performances in a variety of mediums. Through diverse programs such as open calls, exhibitions, interviews, talks, art salons, workshops, and online presentations, we aim to foster a creative community, stimulate intellectual dialogue, cultivate relationships with collectors and viewers, and give our artists ‘latitude’ in their practice. Since its first show at its original location in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, the gallery has presented seventeen solo exhibitions, three group shows, and five art salons, featuring work by Fang Yuan, Siyuan Tan, Stanley Chen, Tong Wu, Locus Chen, Ziyuan Chen, Zhang Lu, Zoe Li, Lau Wai, Mai Yang, Chen Ronghui, Vincent Cy Chen and Tin Wai Wong, to name a few.
In September 2021, LATITUDE Gallery opened a new location in the historical Chinatown neighborhood in Manhattan, New York. The 64 Bayard St space opened with a group show curated by Hongzheng Han, showcasing paintings, sculptures, videos, and work in many other mediums by ten Asian artists. The works presented were all recent and urgent, offering a snapshot of the breadth of LATITUDE Gallery’s vision and objective. This year, in addition to continuing our usual programming, we are launching our new L@ Artist in Residence program with photographer Chen Ronghui as our first artist, and exploring opportunities for our artists in the NFT domain.
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