MRI Forum 51

"China Trade !"

by Konstantin Bessmertny


Summary of the Presentation

The subject of this Forum is a journey through Konstantin Bessmertny’s paintings and recent exhibition in Hong Kong, the title of which is “China Trade!”.  Russian artist Konstantin is one of Macao’s leading painters, who will explain the concept behind “China Trade!” and do a presentation of images.  “China Trade!” is being held from 15th May until 6th June 2009 by Amelia Johnson Contemporary, an exclusive Hong Kong art gallery.  It includes a collection of new paintings by Konstantin.  The artist has also recently exhibited a spectacular, larger-than-life-sized sculpture entitled “Monument to Anyone” (Monument Pro Aliquis), at ArtHK 09 (14th -17th May).  It represented a riderless Renaissance horse carved from wood. Paradoxically populist and elitist at the same time, the installation was the centre-piece of a performative work by the artist. “China Trade!” looks at the trade with China, from the beginning of the 19th century of what has come to be called by historians China Trade, to China’s 21st century emergence as an economic superpower. Konstantin Bessmertny’s observations and conclusions regarding what he describes as the ‘neo China Trade’ were executed with characteristic mastery and ironic humour and he will explain his vision during this Forum.  He will also exhibit a few of his creations during his talk.

Profile of the Speaker

Konstantin Bessmertny (君士坦丁·卑斯米爾尼) is one of the most distinguished artists working in Asia today.  His technical mastery, achieved after seven years of studying Fine Art in the grand academies of the former Soviet Union, combined with his detailed knowledge on a wide-range of subjects including literature, music, history and politics, lend to his work an intelligence and  credibility that is rarely witnessed in contemporary art. Konstantin Bessmertny’s work is utterly unique, employing humour and candour in depictions so subtle and gentle that they require revisiting time and time again to uncover all that they have to offer. Bessmertny uses his work as a means of exploring and experimenting with new ideas, finding inspiration in the bizarrest of places and creating work that continues to challenge and excite preconceived notions.