Galerie Urs Meile is pleased to announce the opening of "Lateral Edge", the latest solo exhibition by artist Li Gang (*1986 in Dali, Yunnan Province, China; currently living and working in Beijing, China) at our Beijing gallery on March 2, 2013. This will mark the third exhibition for Li Gang at Galerie Urs Meile, following two previous solo shows: "A Tranquil Order" at Galerie Urs Meile in Lucerne and "Between" at Galerie Urs Meile in Beijing in 2011. "Lateral Edge" will show the artist’s most recent works created during the last year.
The title of the exhibition comes from a geometric concept: a lateral edge is the intersecting line between two adjacent sides. This is a metaphor for Li Gang’s creative process; he is expert at manufacturing the connections between different things, just as lateral edges generally exist between two different planes. His creative materials are readily available—in this exhibition his new works are made from materials such as trees, pebbles, canvas frames, and thick, hand-weaved canvases—but in most cases, his creative process loses or diminishes the original appearance or significance of these materials.
Beads (2012, wooden spheres, shaped from the connecting points of a dead tree of Yunnan Province, 397 pcs., ø 0.5 – ø 51 cm), one of the principal pieces in the exhibition, presents nearly four hundred pieces of wooden spheres, all shaped from the connection-points of a dead tree in Yunnan Province. As a tree grows, it continually produces new branches, and each new branch or twig that emerges leaves behind a “connection-point”; the hundreds of connections that are formed vary in size according to the thickness of the limbs. A tree growing straight upward is a metaphor of a human life: from birth, with the family as our foundation, we start to develop more and more connections with other people, just as the tree produces so many branches; however, if we gather together all of the connections from the tree, like the wooden beads created in this piece, we may find a new perspective and way of looking at life.
The work Ridge (2012, stones and glue, 70 pieces, different sizes between 24 x 6 x 4.5 and 81 x 24 x 15 cm installation size: 430 x 520 cm) comes from a variety of pebbles collected by Li Gang. The natural process of erosion left the pebbles with different “ridges” projecting from their surfaces. Li Gang found points of connection between two of the pebbles and carefully joined them together with adhesive, extending and connecting their ridges to transform the two pebbles into one form. According to Li Gang, what appear to be independent objects have hidden connections; joining such independent objects together is a way of creating uncertainty between the objects.
Li Gang was born in Dali, Yunnan Province in 1986. After graduating first in his class from the Dali Academy in Dali, Yunnan, he moved to Beijing with the goal of becoming a professional artist and began a career which has been marked by his comprehensive artistic practice. Since then, Li Gang has experimented with various aesthetic possibilities through a wide range of media, from painting and photography to installation and sculpture, exploring enduring topics such as death and time.
We will also publish a catalogue in conjunction with the exhibition.