Hai Bo

When 20 Jan 2011 - 26 Feb 2011
Where Pace/MacGill Gallery
32 EAST 57 ST
New York, NY 10022
United States
Enquiry 212.759.7999

Hai Bo, Passing Traveler, 2008, 47 ¼ x 63 inches. Courtesy of the artist and Pace/Macgill Gallery, New York


January 20 – February 26, 2011

Press Release:

Pace/MacGill Gallery is pleased to present Hai Bo, an exhibition featuring 9 large-scale photographs from the artist’s recent work (2007-2009). This marks Hai Bo’s first exhibition at the gallery.

The passage of time and its inevitable conclusion lay at the heart of Hai Bo’s art. The photographs in this new body of work form a simple, yet eloquent and highly personal meditation on man’s fleeting time on earth. The vast landscapes and quotidian portraits wax nostalgic about simpler times and capture the lingering traces of humanity that have been left behind. “One can say that [these photographs] are elegies for the vanishing agricultural society of China,” says Hai Bo.

Portraits of elderly men figure prominently in Hai Bo’s new photographs. The old man emerging from the dark shadows in 2008-1, for example, is Hai Bo’s uncle, once a hot-tempered, stubborn, and strong-willed man, who over time, mellowed to become quiet, mild, and amiable. In Old Man, 2009, Hai Bo photographed his eighty-year old neighbor in the forest, his head against a tree that seems to be decades his senior. In both works, Hai Bo sees himself reflected in these men as they come to terms with the limits of their lives. “Their today is our tomorrow,” says Hai Bo, “By showing the loneliness, helplessness, and even despair of these old men, I want to convey the emptiness of success and ambition, and the futility of power and strength.”

Hai Bo (b. 1962, Changchun, Jilin Province, China) received a BA in 1984 from the Fine Art Institute of Jilin, China and a MA in 1989 from the Print Department of the Central Institute of Fine Arts, Beijing, China. He is the recipient of the Chinese Contemporary Art Award (2000) and the 55th Michetti Prize from the Museo Michetti, Italy (2004).

Hai Bo’s photographs have been the subject of numerous exhibitions worldwide, including solo exhibitions at the China Art Archives and Warehouse, Beijing (2002), Max Protetch Gallery, New York (2004, 2006), Beijing Commune, Beijing (2007, 2008), and the Smithsonian’s Arthur M.Sackler Gallery, Washington, DC (2010).

His work can be found in the collections of the Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin; Princeton University Art Museum; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Smart Museum of Art, University of Chicago; the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

For more information, please visit www.pacemacgill.com