Shanghai
Art Guide

Contemporary art exhibitions, news and editorial from Shanghai.

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Mainland China's most glamorous city lagged well behind Beijing during China's contemporary art boom in the 1990s and 2000s. Over the past decade, however, Shanghai has taken the lead, thanks in large part to the arrival of world-class museums from one end of the city to the other along the Huangpu River.

Each of Shanghai's museums has its own unique architecture adapted from a past life. There's the beautiful Rockbund Art Museum (RAM), for instance, housed in the former Royal Asiatic Society building, which was established in 1932. And then there's the public Power Station of Art, once a working power station (a fact given away by its name and towering chimney) and now home to the Shanghai Biennale.

Following the barges further upstream brings visitors to three museums established by private collectors: Wang Wei and Liu Yiqian's Long Museum, identified by the huge coal hoppers outside; Chinese-Indonesian collector Budi Tek's Yuz Museum, housed in former aircraft hangars and specialising in jaw-dropping kinetic and large-scale pieces; and karaoke magnate Qiao Zhibing's newly established Tank Shanghai, located in repurposed fuel silos.

On the Bund proper, where early-20th-century architecture—including RAM's building—lends some old-world charm, are blue chip galleries such as Lisson Gallery, Perrotin, and Pearl Lam Galleries. The city's other leading commercial galleries, including ShanghART, MadeIn Gallery, AIKE, Edouard Malingue Gallery, and Arario Gallery are now clustered together in the West Bund.

The West Bund is also where mainland China's leading art fair, West Bund Art & Design, takes place each November. ART021 Shanghai Contemporary Art Fair and PHOTOFAIRS | Shanghai are the city's other big fairs, both of which have helped cultivate an ambitious new generation of Chinese collectors at events that take place in the palatial Shanghai Exhibition Centre.

Among other art spaces worth seeking out are chi K11 art museum, a generously sized contemporary art space beneath art patron Adrian Cheng's K11 shopping mall; OCAT, which specialises in video and new media art in a space on Suzhou Creek; and four local galleries that continue to punch above their weight: M97, Art Labor, BANK Gallery, and am art space, all of which are located in Jing'an.

Image: Shanghai. Photo: Stefan Wagener (CC BY 2.0).

Featured Current Exhibitions In Shanghai

Current Exhibition | Shanghai
12 November 2020–28 February 2021
Group Exhibition

Design & the Wondrous: On the Nature of Ornament

Centre Pompidou x West Bund Shanghai View Exhibition
Exhibition view: Design & the Wondrous: On the Nature of Ornament, Centre Pompidou x West Bund Shanghai (12 November 2020–28 February 2021). Courtesy Centre Pompidou x West Bund Shanghai. 
Design & the Wondrous: On the Nature of Ornament
Current Exhibition | Shanghai
10 November 2020–16 January 2021
Laurent Grasso

Future Herbarium

Perrotin View Exhibition
Exhibition view: Laurent Grasso, Future Herbarium, Perrotin, Shanghai (10 November 2020–16 January 2020). Courtesy the artist and Perrotin. Photo: Mengqi Bao.
Future Herbarium
Current Exhibition | Shanghai
10 November 2020–16 January 2021
Josh Sperling

Paradise

Perrotin View Exhibition
Exhibition view: Josh Sperling, Paradise, Perrotin, Shanghai (10 November 2020–16 January 2021). Courtesy the artist and Perrotin. Photo: Mengqi Bao.
Paradise
Current Exhibition | Shanghai
7 November 2020–27 February 2021
Julian Opie
Lisson Gallery View Exhibition
Julian Opie, Old Street May 2. (2020) (detail). Aluminium, nylon and lights. 185 x 204 x 9 cm. © Julian Opie. Courtesy Lisson Gallery.
Julian Opie
Current Exhibition | Shanghai
6 November–26 December 2020
Group Exhibition

Painting Someone

Almine Rech View Exhibition
Exhibition view: Group Exhibition, Painting Someone, Almine Rech, Shanghai (6 November–26 December 2020). Courtesy the Artists and Almine Rech.
Painting Someone
Current Exhibition | Shanghai
1 November 2020–21 February 2021
Yang Zhenzhong

EXPOSURE | 现形

Rén Space View Exhibition
Yang Zhenzhong, Exposure H (2020). Bluestone. 80 x 120 x 40 cm. Courtesy Rén Space, Shanghai. 
EXPOSURE | 现形

Shanghai In Ocula Magazine

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Current Exhibitions In Shanghai

View All Exhibitions (166)
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Design & the Wondrous: On the Nature of Ornament at Centre Pompidou x West Bund Shanghai
12 November 2020–28 February 2021 Group Exhibition Design & the Wondrous: On the Nature of Ornament Centre Pompidou x West Bund ShanghaiShanghai
Contemporary art exhibition, Laurent Grasso, Future Herbarium at Perrotin, Shanghai
10 November 2020–16 January 2021 Laurent Grasso Future Herbarium PerrotinShanghai
Contemporary art exhibition, Josh Sperling, Paradise at Perrotin, Shanghai
10 November 2020–16 January 2021 Josh Sperling Paradise PerrotinShanghai
Contemporary art exhibition, Julian Opie, Julian Opie at Lisson Gallery, Shanghai
7 November 2020–27 February 2021 Julian Opie Lisson GalleryShanghai
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Painting Someone at Almine Rech, Shanghai
6 November–26 December 2020 Group Exhibition Painting Someone Almine RechShanghai
Contemporary art exhibition, Yang Zhenzhong, EXPOSURE | 现形 at Rén Space, Shanghai
1 November 2020–21 February 2021 Yang Zhenzhong EXPOSURE | 现形 Rén SpaceShanghai

Ocula Member Galleries In Shanghai

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Almine Rech contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Almine Rech Brussels, London, New York, Paris, Shanghai
Arario Gallery contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Arario Gallery Cheonan, Seoul, Shanghai
Asia Art Center contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Asia Art Center Taipei, Beijing, Shanghai
Capsule Shanghai contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Capsule Shanghai Shanghai
Galerie Dumonteil contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Galerie Dumonteil Shanghai, Paris
Lisson Gallery contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Lisson Gallery London, East Hampton, New York, Shanghai
Pearl Lam Galleries contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Pearl Lam Galleries Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai
Perrotin contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Perrotin Hong Kong, New York, Paris, Seoul, Shanghai, Tokyo
Rén Space contemporary art gallery in Shanghai, China Rén Space Shanghai
ShanghART contemporary art gallery in M50, Shanghai, China ShanghART Beijing, Shanghai, Singapore
ShanghART contemporary art gallery in Westbund, Shanghai, China ShanghART Beijing, Shanghai, Singapore

Contemporary Institutions In Shanghai

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Recent Events In Shanghai

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Contemporary art exhibition, ART021 2019 at Ocula Advisory, Shanghai, China
7–10 November ART021 2019

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