Huang Yuxing - 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale Hong Kong Wednesday, June 22, 2022 | Phillips

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  • Recognised for his unique and fantastical painting style, Beijing native Huang Yuxing is one of the most acclaimed Chinese painters within the landscape of Chinese Contemporary Art. By exploring his own imagination and being true to his creative voice within, Huang established his unique and recognisable painterly aesthetic. Light, colour, movement, and depth are central to his visual expression. Huang’s unrestrained neon palette speaks to the vivacious, fast-paced nature of the contemporary era; the sensory impact of fluorescence colours is at once powerful and mesmerising. Through the lens of the individual in his constantly reinvented visual narrations, Huang keeps bringing about his investigations and discussions of universal themes concerning humanity.


    “As an artist, as an individual, I discuss the problems shared by human beings. From my own individual perspective, the problems I discuss are those that our ancestors and future generations will encounter as well. So, it's not something that can be narrative particularly thorough. Even if you think you’ve thought it through, people will continue to discuss these issues a hundred years from now. Because this is a proposition that will trouble the individual human life and the flesh.”
    — Huang Yuxing


    Transcending the Boundaries of Time and Space




    Left: Huang Yuxing, River, 2013
     Sold by Phillips, Hong Kong, 9 July 2020 for HK$1,375,000 (Premium)

     Right: Claude Monet, Impression, soleil levant (Impression, Sunrise), 1872
     Collection of the Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris



    The flamboyant and uplifting Pearl Shore finds its place amongst Huang Yuxing’s signature River series, evoking masterpieces by Impressionist artists such as Claude Monet’s Impression, Sunrise with a similar compositional division and textured depictions of flowing waters. Featuring a signature symbol in Huang’s oeuvre — water, this series reflects on the artist’s musings about time, as he considers water to be a visual representation of time. In this painting, tiny spiky islands of deep violet and rock-like formations rise from the florescent orange, pink and violet water in the fore and middle grounds. Also emerging from this glowing fluid are the illuminated neon bubbles afloat. Light permeates the pictorial plane — what bubble up on the surface adds to the mystery of the unseen world underneath. This magical, life-giving liquid radiates warmth and energy, calling to mind how molten lava brings about new landscape through its exceptional heat and steady movement.



    Underwater Volcanic Eruption in the Tonga Islands, South Pacific, January 2022


    In Huang’s signature style, this work is loaded with concentrated visual information. Upon first glance, one is greeted by the onslaught of multitude of colours, forms, along with their movements and illusional textures. The treatments of the upper and lower half of the painting are noticeably different: the depth conveyed by the horizontally moving water and the scattered substances amidst, comes to a sudden end at the midline, where it meets a flat, wallpaper-looking background. This division introduces a subtle shift in perspective in terms of space and direction: from three dimensional to two dimensional, and from horizontal to vertical.


    “Fluorescent colour is the colour of our generation. There is no such colour system in traditional easel paintings. It is special, like a kind of vigorous vitality being compressed or unleashed. Since this was the colour and the feeling that I needed, I was able to find it.”
    — Huang Yuxing


    Compositionally, the vertical alignment of this work is very rare within Huang’s oeuvre. The multidimensional quality in his work that is normally achieved by overlapping of space — or space within space, is rendered here through a vertical balance of the upper and lower spaces in the composition. The tie-dye patterns in the background seem to be a wave washing out from the midline upwards, echoing that of the growing islands while being perpendicular to the movement of water in the front. Shades of blue, green, teal, and pink that infuse the background of the pictorial plane, recall the drip glaze effect found on Tang dynasty Sancai wares, and thus allow the representation to transcend the boundary of time.



    Tang Dynasty Sancai-glazed Amphora, Late 7th Century
     Collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

    The Flow of Water and Paint


    Not only a symbol in Huang’s artistic repertoire, but water is also an indispensable creative mediator for his applications and manoeuvring of paint. The artist’s potent use of colour is complimented by his choice of working with transparent acrylic paint, creating more breathable space on the pictorial surface. Looking closely at Pearl Shore, one will notice that semi-transparency of the deep violet islands reveals the layer of water patterns underneath. The method of layering has been in Huang’s creative repertoire since his monochrome painting phase. The choice of acrylic, according to the artist, is in keeping with his process of layering different-coloured paints. In addition, due to its high sensitivity to water, acrylic allows him to realise the process of breaking and reconstructing a painting by the interference of water. i


    When the viewer finally breaks through the fascinating retinal stimuli from the vibrant colour palette, Huang’s focus and interest that lie in the discussion of life itself surface to the fore. His fascination with organic life forms and phenomenon on this planet, such as water, mineral, bubble, sunrise and sunset, become the vehicle of transporting audience into his multidimensional and otherworldly realms, just to journey back to the deep diving of the individual and his experience in life and in the world.


    Collector’s Digest


    Born in 1975 in Beijing, Huang Yuxing graduated from the Department of Mural Painting at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in 2000. He was the first guest artist at the Yuz Museum Project Room in 2015 and has been extensively holding solo exhibitions since. Most recently, this includes Heaps of Brocade and Ash at Almine Rech in Brussels (3 June – 31 July 2021), Essence of Landscape at König London (29 August – 18 September 2019), and Huang Yuxing – The Lake of Barking Infants at Whitestone Gallery in Tokyo (9 March – 7 April 2019).


    Huang was recently invited to collaborate with Louis Vuitton for their 2021 ‘Artycapucines’ collection, joining the likes of Urs Fischer, Tschabalala Self, Liu Wei, Henry Taylor, Jonas Wood, and Alex Israel – who have all too, introduced their innovative aesthetic visions to the brand.


    Huang Yuxing, ‘Huang Yuxing: the fear of “And Ne Forthetedon Ná”’, CoBo Social, 11 October 2016, online

    • Provenance

      Private Collection, Asia
      Acquired from the above by the present owner


Pearl Shore

signed and dated 'HUANG Yuxing 18'
acrylic on canvas
200 x 150 cm. (78 3/4 x 59 in.)
Painted in 2018.

Full Cataloguing

HK$1,500,000 - 2,500,000 

Sold for HK$3,024,000

Contact Specialist

Charlotte Raybaud
Specialist, Head of Evening Sale
+852 2318 2026

20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale

Hong Kong Auction 22 June 2022