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Taloi Havini: Reclaiming Space and History Ocula Conversation
In Partnership with Artspace Sydney
Taloi Havini: Reclaiming Space and History By Ruth McDougall, Sydney

Artist Taloi Havini and Ruth McDougall, curator of Pacific art at Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art, discuss Havini's first Australian solo exhibition, Reclamation .

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Ella Kruglyanskaya Steals from Art History, Takes Back Gaze Ocula Insight Ella Kruglyanskaya Steals from Art History, Takes Back Gaze By Tessa Moldan, London

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HomePage Artists

b. 1983, China

Cui Jie Biography

Cui Jie (崔洁) draws from modernist art and 20th- and 21st-century architectural tropes to create layered paintings of utopian (or dystopian) urban scenes that allude to China's recent and rapid urbanisation.

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Featuring futuristic structures that appear at once real and imagined, Cui's architectural paintings often reference the effects of rapid urbanisation on the landscape. Cui's works are characterised by their layering, collage-like fragmentation, and multiple distorted viewpoints that question the figure-ground relationship. She also draws from the architectural idiosyncrasies of the Bauhaus movement, as well as the aesthetics of 20th-century Chinese propaganda and Soviet art.

Cui's characteristic toying with perspective is particularly evident in the painting Corner Building (2017), in which various buildings and a figurative sculpture seem to float in the sky. Parts of the building and sky show through the otherwise-opaque sculpture, while architectural lines are visible in the clouds, confusing the distinction between foreground and background.

Cui's works often function as comparative studies of specific cities. In the painting Shanghai Bank Tower 2 (2017), a spiralling structure merges with what appears to be the titular building. The spiral structure is reminiscent of Vladimir Tatlin's Monument to the Third International (1920)—a key work of Russian Constructivism. Indeed, Cui's aesthetic is often reminiscent of Russian Constructivism—particularly in her emphasis on geometric forms, manmade structures and the aesthetics of industry.

Cui's works frequently reference Chinese propagandist themes of shared community and destiny. The painting Ground Invading Figure #35 (2015), for example, depicts a group of soldiers surrounding a wounded man. In its huddled composition and depiction of uniformed soldiers, the painting draws heavily from the nationalist and socialist realist styles common to the Mao era; yet Cui injects her own contemporary elements such as graphic lines and nonrealistic shapes. In the artwork, are multiple intersections between each solider, not unlike the cross-sections in Cui's architectural paintings. As the figures gather around the wounded man, the individual begins to blend into the collective and the canvas becomes fragmented.

Born in 1983 in Shanghai, Cui graduated from the Department of Oil Painting at China Academy of Art in Hangzhou in 2006 and is currently based in Beijing. Her work has been exhibited at various art institutions such as MoMA PS1, New York; Museum of Fine Arts, Saint Petersburg; Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing; and Iberia Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, amongst others. Cui was part of the group exhibition The Enormous Space at OCAT Shenzhen in 2018. In the same year, she participated in An American City: Eleven Cultural Exercises, the inaugural edition of the FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art.

Perwana Nazif | Ocula | 2018

Cui Jie Featured Artworks

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China Telecom Building 3 by Cui Jie contemporary artwork
Cui JieChina Telecom Building 3, 2019Acrylic and spray paint on canvas
250 x 210 cm
Metro Pictures Enquire about this work
The Peak Tower by Cui Jie contemporary artwork
Cui JieThe Peak Tower, 2019Acrylic on canvas
250 x 210 cm
Pilar Corrias Enquire about this work
The Lakeside Pavilion and the Refreshment Kiosk by Cui Jie contemporary artwork
Cui JieThe Lakeside Pavilion and the Refreshment Kiosk, 2019Acrylic on canvas
180 x 250 cm
Pilar Corrias Enquire about this work
International Space Station by Cui Jie contemporary artwork
Cui JieInternational Space Station, 2019Acrylic and spray paint on canvas
210 x 500 cm
Pilar Corrias Enquire about this work
Chung Wah-nan’s Pavilion in West Lake Park by Cui Jie contemporary artwork
Cui JieChung Wah-nan’s Pavilion in West Lake Park, 2019Colour pencil on paper
29.6 x 21 cm
Pilar Corrias Enquire about this work
Chung Wah-nan’s Listening Falls Pavillion by Cui Jie contemporary artwork
Cui JieChung Wah-nan’s Listening Falls Pavillion, 2019Colour pencil on paper
29.6 x 21 cm
Pilar Corrias Enquire about this work
Copy Qian Xuan’s Wang Xizhi Watching Geese by Cui Jie contemporary artwork
Cui JieCopy Qian Xuan’s Wang Xizhi Watching Geese, 2019Colour pencil on paper
14 x 36.5 cm
Pilar Corrias Enquire about this work
Escape #2 by Cui Jie contemporary artwork
Cui JieEscape #2, 2017Acrylic and oil on canvas

Not For Sale
Para Site

Cui Jie Recent Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, Cui Jie, The Peak Tower at Pilar Corrias, London
Closed
30 August–25 September 2019 Cui Jie The Peak Tower Pilar Corrias, London
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Show, An Opera for Animals at Para Site, Hong Kong
Closed
22 June–25 August 2019 Group Show An Opera for Animals Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai

Cui Jie Represented By

Cui Jie In Ocula Magazine

‘An Opera for Animals’ at Rockbund Art Museum Ocula Report ‘An Opera for Animals’ at Rockbund Art Museum By Penny Liu, Shanghai

An Opera for Animals was first staged at Para Site in Hong Kong between 23 March and 2 June 2019, with works by over 48 artists and collectives that use opera as a metaphor for modes of contemporary, cross-disciplinary art-making. The exhibition's second iteration takes up a large portion of the Rockbund Art Museum (RAM) in Shanghai (22...

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Cui Jie In Related Press

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Gates to the City: Cui Jie Related Press Gates to the City: Cui Jie 3 September 2019, Mousse Magazine

Looking at the work of Cui Jie from a northern European perspective, the first error is probably to think you're seeing some form of lament for a modernist past. That narrative is fairly familiar now, based on a longing for the largest-scale remnants of the material culture of postwar social democracy or state socialism—the buildings they...

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A Word From Painter Cui Jie—Now Represented by Metro Pictures & Pilar Corrias Related Press A Word From Painter Cui Jie—Now Represented by Metro Pictures & Pilar Corrias 18 May 2018, Artspace

Cui Jie's paintings are largely based on her continuous study of the architectural landscape in the three cities in which she has lived: Shanghai, where she was born and grew up, Hangzhou, where she attended the National Art Academy, and Beijing, where she currently lives and works. She observed at first hand the outstanding transformation that...

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Cui Jie Is Now Represented by Metro Pictures, Pilar Corrias, and Antenna Space Related Press Cui Jie Is Now Represented by Metro Pictures, Pilar Corrias, and Antenna Space 14 May 2018, ARTnews

The Shanghai-based artist Cui Jie is now represented by the galleries Metro Pictures (of New York), Pilar Corrias (London), and Antenna Space (Shanghai).

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The Enormous Space Related Press The Enormous Space 1 March 2018, ArtAsiaPacific

In 1989, British author JG Ballard published The Enormous Space, a short story about Gerald Ballantyne, a man who withdraws from the world and fortifies himself in his abode, not due to agoraphobia but to 'experiment' with reducing his immediate environment to nothing but his house, committing what is in effect a slow suicide. OCAT Shenzhen's...

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