Liu Ruowang is one of China's major contemporary artists. He is a sculptor and a writer and has had a very unique career that has been based on the precise socio-cultural baggage of Chinese tradition that he has been able to give testimony to thanks to the universality of his artistic language in which transversal elements with characteristics specific to his own tradition. Lorenzelli Arte's choice to exhibit follows a deepened understanding of the artist and represents a return to Italy after his success at the Venice Biennial in 2015 with the Black Wolves installation. This extensive one-person exhibition is his first in Italy.
The exhibition, curated by Luca Massimo Barbero and Matteo Lorenzelli, is concentrated on the artist's work of the last decade that can truly be considered his period of the attainment of artistic maturity and presents a series of sculptural installations and various paintings for a total of 40 pieces.
Liu Ruowang has a marked propensity for large dimensions; his work brushes on the monumental but does not constitute a cumbersome presence and does not obstruct the view of the surrounding context. Thanks to a studied scenographic impact of continuous dynamism the forms are perceived as passing protagonists that occupy the space without taking possession of it, and with a cyclical sense of movement that suggests scenarios in a temporal continuum.
This is also true of the sculptural installations, among which a pack of wolves, seen previously in Venice, fifteen chimpanzees and a gigantic dodo stand out and whose evocative narrative, amplified by the use of bronze, is rendered from the harmony of the elements of which it is composed. The artist writes: The works are presented in groups because plurality is the kind of form and power that I need when I want to explore the relationship between human beings and their environment, given that China is a country that has always proposed a collectivist spirit. For me, making my work in series or groups corresponds to the structural language of my working process, a language that goes beyond sculptural language.
As far as Liu Ruowang's painting is concerned, we should consider it indivisible from his sculpture. His canvases, even those of large dimensions that portray animal faces or, at times, animals in their natural habit are works that exclude a mimetic faithfulness in favor of an expressivity that employs deformation that alternates the perception of physiognomy in a subtle way.