This November, Sullivan+Strumpf will present the latest body of work by renowned Chinese-Australian artist Lindy Lee at ART021 Shanghai. Through the intuitive process of mark-making with rain and fire, Lee will present a brilliant ensemble of artworks, ranging from works on paper, small-scale free-flowing bronze sculpture, her most significant work to date The Life of Stars across the Main Galleries and the Beyond section. Works by Lindy Lee in this year’s edition of Art Basel Hong Kong met with high reception and international interest, underlined by strong sales at the fair. With the first edition of the sculpture presented close to the Shanghai Exhibition Center, the work will be a familiar sight to locals around Shanghai.
Fair audiences will also view Lee’s installation works, including a ‘flung bronze’ wall installation – horizons growing beyond the visible. Lee’s exploration of the ancient Chinese practice of ‘flung ink painting’, as performed by Ch’an (Zen) Buddhists, has seen the ‘ink splats’ develop into sculptural forms, made by throwing searing molten bronze onto the foundry floor. The action mimics the traditional Chinese practice, which is understood as an act of renewal, where all that is held inside oneself is released. In her latest paper works, Lee uses pyrographic imagery produced by burning holes through sheets of metal and heavyweight paper as a way to further explore the theme of personal journeys. Within the exhibition booth, there will also be a glistening suspended sculptural piece titled The First Innumerable, as a rendition of The Life of Stars in smaller-scale.
The Life of Stars, an awe-inspiring and singular six-metre tall sculpture, made from mirror polished stainless steel, is a symbolic representation of the Earth – the beginning of life, birth and renewal. Perforated with over 30,000 holes, each hand-placed by the artist, it is a work that comes out of having embraced Buddhist and Daoist philosiphies. The sculpture is intended as a blessing of vitality and abundant energy, Lindy Lee draws parallels between a pattern of luminous, interconnecting concentric circles that embellish the sculpture, and the idea that everything in the universe is interrelated.
Created in collaboration with UAP (Urban Art Projects), The Life of Stars demonstrate the idea that wellbeing naturally springs forth when both the individual and the power of interconnection are in balance.
Lindy Lee’s practice explores her Chinese ancestry through Taoism and Ch’an (Zen) Buddhism – philosophies that see humanity and nature as inextricably linked. She employs chance and spontaneity to produce a galaxy of images that embody the intimate connections between human existence and the cosmos. Her works are meditative, often revealing themselves through time. With a practice spanning over three decades, Lindy Lee has a well established reputation in Australia, as well as widespread international recognition. Lee has exhibited in the USA, Germany, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore. Lee’s Buddhist faith and Chinese heritage are interwoven with meditative ruminations on spirituality, life and the universe.
In 1984 she graduated with a Bachelor of Visual Arts and a Postgraduate Diploma in painting from Sydney College of the Arts, and in 2001 she received her PhD in Fine Art from the University of New South Wales. In 2001, a monograph on her work by Benjamin Gennochio and Melissa Chiu was published by Fine Arts Press and Craftsman House, Sydney. In 2008 Lee was the subject of an ABC TV documentary for the ArtistsatWork series.
Selected solo exhibitions include The Seamless Tomb, Sullivan+Strumpf, Sydney (2017); Lindy Lee: The Dark of Absolute Freedom, University of Queensland Gallery, Brisbane (2014); Birth and Death, Campbelltown Art Centre, Sydney (2007); Narrow Road to the Interior, Atrium Space, MITA, Australian High Commission, Singapore (2003); and No Up, No Down, I am the Ten Thousand Things, Project Space, Art Gallery of New South Wales,
Sydney (1995). Selected group exhibitions include Versus Rodin, Art Gallery of South Australia (2017); Made in China, Australia, Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery, Booragul NSW (2013); Marking Time, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (2012); Return to Sender, UQ Art Museum, Brisbane (2012); Made in Australia, Salamanca Arts Centre, Hobart (2012); Photography is Dead, Long Live Photography, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, (1996);
Prospect 93, Frankfurt, Germany (1993); Origins, Originality + Beyond, the 6th Biennale of Sydney, Art Gallery of New South Wales (1986); and On Location: Australian Perspecta, Art Gallery of New South Wales (1985).
Lee is a founding member of Gallery 4A in Sydney’s Chinatown. She is a former board member of Artspace and the Australian Centre of Photography, as well as a former president of the Asian Australian Artists Association and former deputy chair of the Visual Arts and Craft Fund, Australia Council.
Her work is included in numerous major public and private collections throughout Australia and internationally including National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of New South Wales, the National Gallery of Victoria and corporate collections throughout US, Europe and Asia. In collaboration with UAP, Lee has completed major public commissions in China, including The Life of Stars – Tenderness of Rain for the Zheng Zhou Cultural Centre (2016) and the redevelopment of the New Century Garden in Chinatown, Sydney (2014).
Lee has just been announced as one of the key artists for the 2018 Adelaide Biennial of Australia Art.