In 2012, the late George Wong founded The Parkview Museum (Parkview Green Fangcaodi Tower D, 10th floor, 9 Dongdaqiao road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, China), a private and no-profit institution. Previously named Parkview Green Exhibition Hall, the museum officially changed its name in October 2016. The museum, located on the 10th floor of the Parkview Green Fangcaodi building, covers an area of 4,000 square meters. Beside the international collection of classic and modern art, the museum’s collection includes masterpieces from Zeng Fanzhi, Yue Minjun, Cheng Wenling, Zhang Huan and other established Chinese contemporary artists and also artworks from Italian, Austrian, German, French and American contemporary artists. The Parkview Museum presents the exhibition “WELCOME TO PARKVIEW GREEN III – Parkview Contemporary Art Collection” until the 30th of March 2021. The works displayed are characterized by a balanced and vibrant dialogue and they all belong to the collection of The Parkview Museum. The participating artists, all internationally established, come from different cultural background: Carla Mattii, Donald Baechler, David Salle, Gianni Dessì, Julian Schnabel, Liu Xiaodong, Li Hui, Massimo Barzagli, Marc Quinn, Olga Tobreluts, Peter Halley, Rainer Fetting, Wu Mingzhong, Yang Tao, Yu Hong, Zheng Lu.
The selection of the works, while taking into account a thematic coherence, reflects the personal choice and the passion for art of a private collection. Each artist is given large space in the exhibition halls of the museum and therefore the overall visual impact of the show is impressive. For example, in the Sistina Chapel, the combination of frescoes reflects a structured miscellanea where the religious character functions as fil rouge. In this show, the works are combined together through a chromatic development, moving along words and sentences, like small steps and gestures. Three contemporary Italian artists are presented in the show.
Massimo Barzagli (Marradi, 1960) had the turning point of his artistic career starting from 1990, with the presentation of his work at Fabio Sargentini’s L’Attico Gallery. The exhibition, curated by Maurizio Calvesi, marked a moment of great vibration and a confirmation for all the subsequent developments of his work. From the beginning, his work has been always characterized by an experimental and interdisciplinary approach, which allowed him to combine the gestural elements of the pictorial action with the pursuit of the material character. He experimented with a wide range of materials spanning canvas, glass, paper and wax, surfaces where the artist impressed the imprints of his visual repertoire composed by diverse and multifaceted elements: animals, flowers, human figures and objects.
Gianni Dessì (Rome, 1955), from the previous generation, belongs to a larger artistic context, alongside with his fellows artists like Giuseppe Gallo and Bruno Ceccobelli, whose works have been presented in the gallery of Ugo Ferranti in Rome: these artists share similarities in their artistic research, while retaining specific and distinctive generative points in their expressive language. At the beginning, the aim of Dessì’s artistic research was to investigate the relationship between light, form and matter: this approach can be reconfigured within a new- informal context, very much in line with his academic education.
The youngest among the Italian artists is Carla Mattii (Fermo, 1971), whose artistic research revolves around the exploration of the thin line that separates, on one hand, reality and fiction, and on the other hand, natural and artificial beauty. Experimenting with photography, sculpture and installations, Carla Mattii creates an intimate and personal herbarium through hybrid creations and graft compositions. Her works are characterized by the manipulation of natural elements through the use of new technologies such as photo retouching, 3D scanning and high-fidelity prototyping.
The diversity and multifaceted character of the exhibition “Welcome to Parkview Green III – Parkview Contemporary Art Collection” emerges also in the selection of very famous international artists like Julian Schnabel e Peter Halley. Julian Schnabel, today a very famous cult movie director (“Basquiat” and “Van Gogh” are among his most important movies), was originally the embodiment of the international Transavanguardia (we all remember “Aperto” at the Venice Biennale 1980). Peter Halley is the celebrated exponent of the phenomenon of Neo-Geo, a generation after.
Among the group of Chinese contemporary artists we also have a multifaceted and complex combination of artistic practices and languages. The contemporary pursuit of spirituality in the works of Yang Tao and Zheng Lu are combined with the analytical approach of the poetic realism of Liu Xiaodong. Yu Hong brings the viewer into a dream- like dimension, where the boundaries between rational and irrational and between reality, imagination and memory are all blurred.
Wu Mingzhong explores the fragility of the individual in contemporary society through the representation of human figures made of glass, while Li Hui brings the viewer into a liminal space where reality and illusion overlaps, to cast light on the complex relationship between humans and nature, while unveiling the contradictions of the technological progress.
This exhibition originates from the passion for and the admiration of each single displayed artwork, avoiding any ideological statement. The selection of the works celebrates the interest for the diversity, the pleasure of the details, the beauty of the forms. In the exhibition there is no attempt to engage in any social criticism that, for a long time, has drawn the attention of many art critics from the West, which might be experiencing a slow but relentless sunset.
“Welcome to Parkview Green III – Parkview Contemporary Art Collection”
Until March 31, 2020
The Parkview Museum
9 Dongdaqiao Road
Chaoyang District, Beijing
Massimo Barzagli, opere dal ciclo Figure senza posa, 1999, impronta di corpo umano vestito e dipinto con colori vinilici su tela, cad. 200 x 200 cm, courtesy The Parkview Museum
Donald Baechler, Pale Truths, 2008, mixed technique on canvas, 254 x 203,5 cm, courtesy The Parkview Museum
Wu Mingzhong, Them, 2009, acrylic on canvas, 210 x 290 cm, courtesy The Parkview Museum
Li Hui, Door, 2015, laser, mirrored surface, steel, aluminium alloy, 240 x 180 x 80 cm (variable dimensions), courtesy The Parkview Museum
Zheng Lu, Non-flowers, 2014, stainless steel / lacquer, 320 x 310 x 300 cm, courtesy The Parkview Museum
Marc Quinn, Under the Volcano, 2011, oil on canvas, 278,5 x 504,5, courtesy The Parkview Museum