Laugh Out Loud, curated by Opera Gallery
Works by Yue Minjun, Liu Dao and Xiao Bai
In a special collaboration with the historic French department store Galeries Lafayette, Opera Gallery – one of the largest and most respected gallery chains in the world – is delighted to present a group exhibition of contemporary artists Yue Minjun, Liu Dao and Xiao Bai.
Titled “LOL – Laugh Out Loud”, the exhibition will take place in the exquisite and happening “Le Jardin” space located on the fifth floor of the department store, spreading over 200 sq. m. in the open atrium. This exhibition supports Galeries Lafayette’s brand mission of presenting fresh fashion aligned with art and culture.
On display are limited edition lithographs by renowned contemporary Chinese artist Yue Minjun, digital artworks by Shanghai-based artist collective Liu Dao and sculptures by Beijing-based French artist Xiao Bai, all of which similarly exude pure joy and the spirit of optimism.
Yue Minjun was born in 1962 in Heilongjiang, China. A graduate from the Oil Painting Department of Hebei Normal University, he is best known for his self-portraits in oil depicting himself laughing in various settings. Though his works are seemingly light hearted, his ‘smiles’ in fact denote violence and vulnerability, an effect often associated with the contemporary Chinese movement “Cynical Realism” that offers a philosophical enquiry towards existence. Yue’s portrait paintings allude simultaneously to the Laughing Buddha, a 20th century Communist worker, and Post- Modernist irony. His works have gained him tremendous international acclaim, exhibiting in public galleries and public spaces all over the world.
Liu Dao, founded in 2007 in Shanghai, is an art collective of technologists and artists. The ensemble produces cutting-edge art that constantly contemplates the future of Asia, engaging the sights and transition from the old to new China. Their art is visual, interactive, conceptual, humorous and sometimes somber – the striking result is always a fresh take on modern technology. Liu Dao’s works are unique and original products of collaboration by varying talents, using the same process as the film industry – each involves a technical crew and oftentimes a cast of provocative talents. Their works are electronic and interactive, using LED screens and other technology in mostly interactive installations. The group makes a valuable contribution to the support of new media in contemporary Chinese art.
Xiao Bai was born in Nevers, France in 1971 as Arnaud Sarrade. He currently lives and works in Beijing. His iconic work titled “Mickey Never Down” came to completion in the summer of 2012, inspired by the celebrated Mickey Mouse universally adored for his good character, benevolence and bravery. However, to Xiao Bai, what makes his character so relatable and unique is that, like human beings, he is still vulnerable. He is put to trial by challenges, which are often disproportionately compared to his small size, in the same way that human beings strive to survive in a world of adversity that is often beyond their control. The Mickey figurines all come in limited editions. They have been shown in prominent locales in France and China.
Opera Gallery welcomes to you to our alluring new show space to celebrate these extraordinary talents of varying art forms that have marked an era of monumental transition in the contemporary Chinese art world.
About Opera Gallery
Opera Gallery is part of Opera Gallery Group, comprised of 10 galleries located throughout the world. Founded in 1994 by French art dealer Gilles Dyan, Opera Gallery hosts and actively promotes major artworks of both modern and contemporary art. The gallery continuously supports emerging artists as well, presenting their works to prestigious private and public collections and promoting them through its international platform. The gallery has been present in Asia for twenty years with galleries in Singapore, Hong Kong and Seoul. This exhibition is its first venture into China, establishing a platform for the brand’s future expansion into the local market.
About Galeries Lafayette
Founded in the late 19th century, Galeries Lafayette has always been an anchor of the retail industry with a unique objective of making fashion accessible to everyone. It is also known as a temple of living fashion and home to cutting-edge designer collections offering a constantly renewed selection of brands from the most prestigious to the most accessible. It currently has a network of 64 stores, 59 of which are in France with four around the world in Berlin, Dubai, Casablanca and Jakarta.
More than a shopping experience, the department store has strived to establish a connection with customers through fashion, art and culture. Its annual exhibition program in Paris titled “Windows on Art” presents works borrowed from famous art institutions, exclusively showcasing artist- designed window displays. This concept exhibition has been extended from Paris to include three more French cities - Marseille, Nantes and Strasbourg last year. To form a closer link with the Chinese audience, Beijing’s Galeries Lafayette welcomes exhibitions by Chinese artists to be featured at the new Beijing store on a rotating basis, coalescing art with fashion in a new and exciting form.