Chinese Art Collector Donates Important Works of Chinese Contemporary Art to M+

On 24/03/2014 by Site Default


M+, Hong Kong’s future museum for visual culture, has received a donation of 37 important works of Chinese contemporary art from Guan Yi, one of the most important art collectors in China. Guan Yi’s internationally acclaimed collection was launched in 2001, and has a vast range of artworks dating from the 1980s to the present. The first of its kind in mainland China, the collection is especially noted for its emphasis on the work of the ’85 New Wave, conceptual art and large-scale installations. The collection includes works by the members of the Stars Group, a critical player in the beginning of contemporary Chinese art, and is also particularly strong in Chinese conceptual art throughout its trajectory over the last 30 years.

The donation includes works spanning the years from 1979 to 2005.  The donation includes works by Huang Rui, the New Measurement group, Huang Yong Ping, Wu Shanzhuan, Gu Dexin, Zhang Peili, Wang Guangyi, Wang Luyan, Lin Yilin, Liang Juhui, Chen Shaoxiong, Yan Lei, Zhou Tiehai, Xu Zhen, Chen Wenbo, Wang Yin, Shen Yuan, Zheng Guogu, Cao Fei and Duan Jianyu. Also included is the complete checklist of “Canton Express,” a historic exhibition that was a part of the 2003 Venice Biennale, which was the first major presentation on the international stage of contemporary art from the Pearl River Delta region.

This is not the first donation to be made to M+.   In June 2012, museum received a donation of 1,463 works by Dr Uli Sigg of Switzerland valued at HKD1.3 billion in June 2012. The Guan Yi donation is the latest in a series of remarkable gifts to M+.  Excited about the gift, Michael Lynch, WKCDA’s Chief Executive Officer said, “Guan Yi’s generous donation is a marker of the trust and respect that M+, Hong Kong’s future museum for visual culture, already holds within the international artistic community, and signals building global anticipation for the first museum of its kind in Asia – already housing one of the most important collections of Hong Kong and Chinese contemporary art worldwide.”

Coming at a time when Chinese contemporary art is getting unfathomable recognition across the globe, Guan Yi’s generous donation is a major source of celebration in China. Dr Lars Nittve, Executive Director, M+, said, “Guan Yi’s donation chronicles extremely fascinating moments in the history of Chinese contemporary art. They coalesce to form a hugely significant period of history and demonstrate the conceptual revolution that has taken place in Chinese art. Many large-scale pieces did not receive attention from private collectors, especially prior to 2005, nor did they find homes in public collections. That such works were systematically preserved after their original exhibitions is no small feat. We are thrilled that a collector from mainland China has chosen to make a generous donation to a public cultural institution—it is an incredibly meaningful gesture.”

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