Art Basel Hong Kong’s Encounters Will Feature Katharina Grosse and Rirkrit Tiravanija

The fair will feature 12 brand new large-scale installations.

Joyce Ho, On the second day, Saturday, your three minutes. Courtesy of TKG+.

Art Basel in Hong Kong has revealed the 17 large-scale artworks that will make up its Encounters sector for 2017. Twelve of those works are new for the fair.

Curated by Alexie Glass-Kantor, the executive director of Artspace in Sydney, Encounters will engage with history, politics, and culture to explore how time is represented in art. Artists in this section are Pio Abad, Rasheed Araeen, Katharina Grosse, Gonkar Gyatso, Joyce Ho, Hu Qingyan, Bingyi, Waqas Khan, Kimsooja, Alicja Kwade, Dinh Q. Lê, Li Jinghu, Sanné Mestrom, Michael Parekowhai, Shen Shaomin, Rirkrit Tiravanija, and Wang Wei.

“For my third year curating the sector,” said Glass-Kantor in a statement, “I was interested in exploring the relationship between time and experience, specifically, how time is related to encounters.”

Li Jinghu, <em>White Clouds</em>. Courtesy of Magician Space.

Li Jinghu, White Clouds. Courtesy of Magician Space.

Some of the anticipated highlights of the section are seven new sculptures by Katharina Grosse (who currently has a solo show in New York at Gagosian Gallery). She’ll be showing a set of craggy aluminum casts of sculptures she carved from Styrofoam and painted in bold colors using an industrial spray gun. These works will be scattered around the space like colorful outcroppings.

Pakistani artist Waqas Khan, with Austria’s Galerie Krinzinger, will contribute a massive drawing-sculpture. Titled In the Name of God II, the work has been created in the style of Persian Mughal miniature painting, comprising thousands of tiny marks on traditional Indian handmade paper that form a filigree design.

Katharina Grosse, <em>Untitled</em> (2016). © Katharina Grosse und VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2016. Courtesy Gagosian.

Katharina Grosse, Untitled (2016).
© Katharina Grosse und VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2016. Courtesy Gagosian.

Berlin-based artist Alicja Kwade, co-represented by König Galerie (Berlin), 303 Gallery (New York), and Kamel Mennour (London and Paris), will show The Beat, a massive, functional sculpture made from 26 stacked steel beams that represent the longitude of time and offers visitors a place to rest.

Rirkrit Tiravanija’s large-scale installation for Galerie neugerriemschneider (Berlin), features five versions of the same 3D-printed bonsai trees on Constantin Brâncuși-inspired pedestals, displayed in a traditionally-tied bamboo scaffolding structure.

Shen Shaomin, <em>Summit</em>. Courtesy of Osage Gallery.

Shen Shaomin, Summit. Courtesy of Osage Gallery.

Behind the main show floor, there will be a hidden work by Joyce Ho, On the second day, Saturday, your three minutes, from Chinese gallery TKG Plus. The work invites fair-goers to drink and converse with strangers in a series of rooms with semi-transparent mirrors.

Other works include Shen Shaomin’s Summit, from Hong Kong’s Osage Gallery, with sculptures of dead Communist leaders Fidel Castro, Ho Chi Minh, Kim Il Sung, Vladimir Lenin, and Mao Zedong; and Not a Shield, but a Weapon, 180 fake counterfeit versions of Margaret Thatcher’s purse, from Pio Abad at Silverlens Gallery (Manila).

Pio Abad, Not a Shield, but a Weapon (2016). Courtesy of Silverlens, Manila.

Pio Abad, Not a Shield, but a Weapon (2016). Courtesy of Silverlens, Manila.

Outside the convention center walls, moving art will appear on the city streets, with Hong Kong artist Kingsley Ng transforming two public trams (introduced in 1904) into a camera obscura art piece titled Twenty-Five Minutes Older.

Passengers inside the tram will witness projections of the passing streets of Hong Kong along their journey, while listening to excerpts from the Liu Yichang novella Tête-bêche. The project was originally commissioned and staged by the Arts Development Council in Hong Kong for its 20th anniversary celebration, “Human Vibrations: The 5th Large-Scale Public Media Art Exhibition.”

Kingsley Ng, <em>25 Minutes Older</em>. Courtesy of the Arts Development

Kingsley Ng, 25 Minutes Older. Courtesy of the Arts Development

Art Basel in Hong Kong takes place at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, 1 Expo Dr, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, March 23–25, 2017.

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