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Qiu Xiaofei

Qiu Xiaofei is best known for his evocatively coloured paintings that fuse intuitive and playful forms. Using memory, allegory, and a dreamlike narrative, he draws on both Eastern and Western aesthetics across generations. Qiu perceives painting as an interplay between physical sensation and cognitive knowledge, and a call for spiritual energy to gain a deeper understanding of the world. Drawing inspirations from ancient and modern thinkers, he considers time to function like a spiral. Past, present, and future coalesce in a constant state of flux and mutual interaction. Within his works, he typically incorporates multiple temporal dimensions or layers that result in an enigmatic synthesis. Foreground and background often dissolve to create a sense of infinite and non-hierarchical space. In his continuous exploration of time as such, a spiral is both the source of composition and image as well as a force that informs his style and development. The source of Qiu’s inspirations ranges from personal childhood memories, his hometown Harbin and its geographical relationship with the Soviet Union to compositions in ancient religious art. In recent years, Qiu has started to use traditional mineral colours vastly on his canvas, resulting in an organic texture and a sense of the distant past. His dreamlike and enigmatic compositions often juxtapose abstract and representational elements, embodying the Chinese landscape painting spirit and brushstrokes on the intricate two-dimensional images.

Qiu Xiaofei (b. 1977, Harbin, China) graduated from the Central Academy of Fine Arts Beijing in 2002, and now lives and works in Beijing. His work has been featured in major exhibitions internationally, including in M+, Hong Kong (2023); Taikang Art Museum, Beijing (2023); G Museum, Nanjing (2023); UCCA Edge, Shanghai (2022); He Art Museum, Guangdong (2021); Fort Gansevoort, New York (2018); Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville (2018); Tampa Museum of Art, Florida (2014); Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam (2014); Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing (2013); Long Museum, Shanghai (2013); The 10th Havana Biennial, Havana (2009); Tate Liverpool, Liverpool (2007); ZKM | Museum of Contemporary Art, Karlsruhe (2007); Kunstmuseum Bern, Switzerland (2005).

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