Liu Wei (b. 1972, Beijing, China; lives and works in Beijing, China) explores 21st-century socio-political concepts such as the contradictions of contemporary society and the transformation of developing cities and the urban landscape. In many of his sculptural and installation works, he uses found materials that are re- contextualized to draw new meanings out of the materials from which they are made. Liu Wei frequently uses geometric and architectural forms in his work as a reference to his urban surroundings.
Liu Wei graduated from the National Academy of Fine Arts, Hangzhou, China in 1996. Solo exhibitions of his work have been organized at Long Museum, Shanghai, China (2020); Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH (2019); Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland, OH (2019); Long March Space, Beijing, China (2018); PLATEAU, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, South Korea (2016); Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA), Beijing, China (2015); Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, the Netherlands (2014); and Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai, China (2011). Liu Wei has participated in several international biennials and notable group exhibitions including Urban Impressions: Experiencing the Global Contemporary Metropolis, Moody Center for the Arts, Houston, TX (2022); Aesthetics: Collection of Qiao Zhibing, Tank Shanghai, Shanghai, China (2021); The Allure of Matter: Material Art from China, Smart Museum of Art, Chicago, IL (2020); Bodyscapes, The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, Israel (2020); Trilogy of Contemporary Art in China: THE SCAR, Busan Museum of Art, Busan, South Korea (2020); Homo Faber: Craft in Contemporary Sculpture, Asia Culture Center, Gwangiu, South Korea (2019); The Allure of Matter: Material Art from China, Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Los Angeles, CA (2019); the 58th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (2019); Art and China after 1989: Theater of the World, Guggenheim Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA (2018); What About Art? Contemporary Art from China, Qatar Museum, Doha, Qatar (2016); Bentu, Chinese artists at a time of turbulence and transformation, Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris, France (2016); La vie Moderne, La Biennale de Lyon, Lyon, France (2015); 28 Chinese, Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, CA (2015), San Antonio Museum of Art, TX (2015), and Rubell Family Collection, Miami (2013); Re:emerge: Towards a New Cultural Cartography, Sharjah Biennial 11 (2013); 4th Guangzhou Triennial, China (2012); Rehearsal, Shanghai Biennale (2010); Expenditure, Busan Biennale, South Korea (2008); and the 51st Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (2005).
Liu Wei’s work is included in numerous collections such as the Astrup Fearnley Museet, Oslo, Norway; Baku Museum of Modern Art, Baku, Azerbaijan; Burger Collection, Hong Kong; Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art, Turin, Italy; Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH; DSL Collection, Paris, France; Faurschou Foundation, Copenhagen, Denmark; Guy and Myriam Ullens Collection, Belgium; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Haudenschild Collection, San Francisco, CA; Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin, Italy; Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, South Korea; M+ Sigg Collection, Hong Kong; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia; Rubell Family Collection, Miami, FL; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY; Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA; and White Rabbit Gallery, Sydney, Australia. The artist has received honors and distinctions including the Atron AAC Award for Artist of the Year (2016); Martell Artist of the Year (2012); Credit Suisse Today Art Award, Today Art Museum (2011); CCAA Award for Best Artist (2008); and a CCAA Honorable Mention (2006).
Artist portrait: Photo by Dora Tang