Shanghai's November fair season, which kicks off this week, has become the autumn centerpiece of the Asian art calendar, rivaled only by Art Basel in Hong Kong in the spring. The massive ART021 (10–12 November), now marking its fifth year, has since last year run concurrently with the more intimate, four-year-old West Bund Art & Design fair (10–12 November), and on even years with the Shanghai Biennale (the next one takes place in 2018). Shanghai's local galleries and non-commercial institutions use the confluence to present their biggest and boldest projects, and this year sees an expanding roster of international galleries organising pop-up exhibitions and parties as well.
Yu Youhan, New Life: 1987 Mosaic (detail) (2017) Courtesy of the artist and Ren Space.
Yuz Museum Shanghai, located a quick trot from the West Bund fair site, will open the second installment of its Shanghai Galaxy series on 10 November. With academic advice from Wu Hung and curated by Yuz's staff, Shanghai Galaxy II (until 11 February 2018) continues the 2015 original's exploration of artists based in or making art explicitly about Shanghai, its urban culture, and the evolution of its art scene. The works by the 22 artists on show were mostly created in the last two years, though also include revisitations of key pieces, such as Yu Youhan's New Life: 1987 Mosaic, which recreates, on traditional handmade paper, a mosaic first installed on the wall of the Shanghai Academy of Art and Design 30 years ago. There is also a re-edit of Ming Wong's film 明年 / Next Year / L’Année prochaine, first shot in Shanghai in 2015. Other artists include Hu Yun, Michael Lin, Zhou Xiaohu and Liang Yue.
Yu Ji, Oliv, Oliv!, installation view at Prec(ar)ious Collective, Le Pavillon Neuflize OBC in Athens (2017) Courtesy of the Rockbund Art Museum
Rockbund Art Museum
The Rockbund Art Museum presents the four finalists of its third biannual HUGO BOSS ASIA ART Award for Emerging Asian Artists, which highlights rising regional talents. This year’s artists are Li Ming, Tao Hui and Yu Ji, all from China, and Robert Zhao Renhui from Singapore. Li and Tao both work primarily in video, with Li exploring the personal and experiential while Tao contemplates individuals' relationships to each other and society. Yu’s sculptures and installations play with material and form, while Zhao's research-based works focus on nature and its degradation. The show runs until 11 February, and the award winner will be announced on 23 November.
Antony Gormley, STILL MOVING, installation view, Long Museum, Shanghai (2017). Courtesy of White Cube. Photo © Oak Taylor Smith
Long Museum's West Bund location is showing Western masters past and present, with Rembrandt, Vermeer and Hals in the Dutch Golden Age: Masterpieces from The Leiden Collection (until 25 February 2018) paired with Antony Gormley: Still Moving (until 26 November). Gormley has been a favorite in China since his ASIAN FIELD project toured Shanghai, Beijing, Chongqing and Guangzhou in 2003 and 2004, and in 2015 the life-size nude figures of EVENT HORIZON made a stir atop a series of Hong Kong roofs. The exhibition centres around his 1995 project CRITICAL MASS II, an installation of 60 cast-iron figures, and also includes drawings and spatial installations such as 2012's BREATHING ROOM and new work PASSAGE II. The Long Museum’s Leiden collaboration, meanwhile, brings 78 Dutch classics to Shanghai, many for the first time.
West Bund Art & Design: http://westbundshanghai.com/index.php/English
Yuz Museum Shanghai: http://www.yuzmshanghai.org/
Rockbund Art Museum: http://www.rockbundartmuseum.org/en/
Long Museum: http://thelongmuseum.org/en/