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Chen Fei's first solo show in Europe opens at Galerie Urs Meile
Chen Fei, The Day is Yet Long, 2015. Acrylic on linen, 180 × 240 cm. The artist and Galerie Urs Meile, Beijing-Lucerne.

LUCERNE.- Galerie Urs Meile announces the opening of The Day is Yet Long from its up-and-coming artist Chen Fei (*1983 in Hongtong, Shanxi, China). This is his second solo exhibition since he began working with Galerie Urs Meile and his first solo show in Europe. The exhibition features a series of works that the artist has created since 2013. Chen Fei’s main creative media is painting, and he particularly loves a “super flat” creative technique that is straightforward and clean. Under bright and beautiful colours and clean, almost mechanical lines, a simple visual disguise is created. With consistently strong narrative characteristics, disturbing emotions leak out.

Chen Fei’s works have been mostly autobiographical. His expertise is the choreography of the scene. Those scenes of daily life could not be any more common but, because of tedious detail and character arrangement, often bring out a compact tension and an unexpected sense of drama. Chen Fei has an almost paranoid discipline towards detail. Because of this, he injects a strong sense of realism and the feeling of a film still into his work. Viewers standing in front of the canvas often back away out of discomfort. However, in spite of this, they are often still “kidnapped” into speculating on the canvas’ psychological narrative and characters.

In the series of works of all the same size (180 × 240 cm each) that we are exhibiting this time, he often imbeds himself in the paintings as characters: as a bare-chested shop owner or as ‘police officer’. Chen Fei mocks himself without mercy. A backdrop of obvious nudity and images of genitals signify lust, ugliness, etc. as a kind of abstract experience. Chen Fei’s works are filled with purpose and visual elements, often referred to as “bad taste”, yet they affect the viewer’s eye in a strange way.

His quirky imagination takes the plain and ordinary and adds attractive imagery and tension, and his paranoia towards detail and “accuracy” makes his scenes’ arrangements surprising, yet highly believable. At the same time, he gives the viewer the excitement of breaking through an ugly, false mask. Chen Fei’s fine painting method determines that his painting is a slow, almost boring, process. But in this kind of month and year-long exploration, he gives his own movie script the perfect subtext and gives the viewer a sensory experience of discomfort that does not fade.

Chen Fei (*1983 in Hongtong, Shanxi, China) graduated from Beijing Film Academy Fine Art department in 2005 and currently lives and works in Beijing. The artist’s recent exhibitions include the solo exhibition Flesh and Me (2014) at Galerie Perrotin’s Hong Kong space. Group exhibitions include: The Civil Power— Beijing Minsheng Modern Art Museum Opening Exhibition, Beijing Minsheng Art Museum, Beijing, China (2015); A New Dynasty—Created in China, ARoS Aarhus Art Museum, Aarhus, Denmark (2015); 1199 People, Long Museum, Shanghai, China (2014) as well as 1st CAFAM Future Exhibition, China Central Academy of Fine Arts Museum (2012). In 2012, he received the Martell Art Fund’s „Focus on Talents Project“ award.

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