Zhao Zhao - 24/7: Online Auction Hong Kong Tuesday, July 20, 2021 | Phillips

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  • Catalogue Essay

    Leading Chinese contemporary artist Zhao Zhao is famous for his non-conformist artworks and his role as the long-time assistant for influential Chinese artist and activist, Ai Weiwei. Zhao has been the subject of increasing international recognition and acclaim in recent years, having been previously nominated for “Young Artist of the Year” in 2017 by the AAC (Award of Art China). In 2019, Zhao Zhao was honoured with his first museum solo exhibition at the Song Art Museum in Beijing, and was also named “Artist of the Year”. 


    His beautifully-rendered Sky paintings, first unveiled in 2015, depict the billowing clouds that undulate across the surface of the canvas, formations of a lighter blue emerging from areas of cold darkness. Sky No. 13 (2014) is a quintessential example from this celebrated series, verging on abstraction through the artist’s luscious strokes of oil on linen and moody modulation of blues.


    Installation views of works from the Sky series exhibited at Zhao Zhao’s solo exhibition In The Desert Below A Constellation • In The Sky at Tang Contemporary Art, Beijing (7 October - 19 November 2017)

    These works serve as Zhao’s response to the air pollution in Beijing, and the rarity of having a clear blue sky in the city. Indeed, the apparent thickness of the billowing darkness is reminiscent of a dense smog, through which patches of light blue sky and natural sunlight struggle to pierce from behind, serving as a sort of back-light in the painting. Therefore, Sky No. 13 is rooted in the context of China and his identity as a Chinese contemporary artist. Significantly, his Sky series were featured in his solo show, In The Desert Below A Constellation • In The Sky at Tang Contemporary Art in Beijing from 7 October to 19 November 2017.


    Having graduated from the Xinjiang Institute of the Arts in 2003 and later attending the Beijing Film Academy, Zhao Zhao is a multidisciplinary artist, working in a range of media from documentary filmmaking to oil painting, participating in exhibitions around the world. Notobale solo exhibitions include Green at the Song Art Museum, Beijing in 2019; In Extremis - Art Basel Hong Kong Encounters Project at Tang Contemporary Art, Hong Kong in 2019; and Project Taklamakan in Xinjiang - Art Basel Hong Kong Project at Tang Contemporary Art, Hong Kong in 2017. 

    • Provenance

      Roberts & Tilton, Los Angeles
      Acquired from the above by the present owner


Sky No. 13

signed and dated 'Zhao Zhao [in Chinese] 2014.' on the reverse
oil on linen
150 x 150 cm. (59 x 59 in.)
Painted in 2014.

Full Cataloguing

HK$80,000 - 120,000 

Sold for HK$214,200

Contact Specialist

Hin Hin Wong
Associate Specialist, 20th Century & Contemporary Art, Hong Kong
+852 2318 2013
[email protected]

24/7: Online Auction

Online Auction 21 - 30 July 2021