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Wang Ke (Chinese, b.1979)
LOT ID: 72809
Black Pupil, 2006

Acrylic, on Canvas
59 х 39.4 in. (149.86 x 100.08 cm.)
Signed, other, on back of canvas.
Lot description
"Black Pupil" (2006) is a major painting by one of the most exciting Chinese Contemporary Chinese artists of the 80's generation, Wang Ke (b. 1982, China). This painting depicts an other-worldly creature, painted a matte-black, painted in a super-cropped, close-up composition, so that the figure's large head, long neck and torso occupy most of the picture plane. The exaggerated proportions of the figure, with large, oval head atop a spindly neck and slender shoulders creates a cartoonish feel, as well as a slick silhouette and clever use of negative space. This painting measures 59 x 39.4 inches (150 x 100 cm) is unframed and in excellent condition.

This creature faces frontal, gazing outwards, and winks with one large eye closed, seemingly unaware of its runny nose. With other eye wide-open, this creature stares unflinchingly outward. Wang has painted the iris of the open eye with such intense color, depth and detail that it transforms the entire painting, infusing it with electricity. The supernatural palette and incredible details of the iris, painted in flecks and facets of yellows, browns, and blues, framed in spiky white eyelashes, is in intentional and dramatic contrast to the flat treatment of the rest of the work. Suddenly, this figure is more than just a remote cartoon character, it becomes human, even super-human, possessing a psychological depth and an emotional intensity that is mesmerizing.

Wang Ke is already internationally famed for her series of acrylic paintings of this cartoonish creature in various states and situations. The artist admittedly uses this figure as a vehicle to express her own state of mind as she is making the work, whether feeling happy, sad, lonely, angry, lazy or mischievous.

Wang Ke is represented by several prestigious galleries internationally, including F2 Gallery in China, and China Contemporary (with galleries in Beijing, London, New York) . She has exhibited her paintings in China, Brazil, France, the United Kingdom and the US. Her works retail for $7,000-$15,000 on the primary market and in major Corporate and Private Collections. The artist received her degrees in painting in 2001 from The Chinese Academy of Art Preparatory School and her advanced degree in 2007 from The Chinese Academy of Art, New Media Department. The artist presently lives and works in Hangzhou, China.

Black Pupil by Wang Ke
  • Black Pupil by Wang Ke
  • Black Pupil by Wang Ke
  • Black Pupil by Wang Ke
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