Hong Kong’s M+ museum announced another important donation from Guan Yi, the scion of a wealthy chemical manufacturing family who turned over management of the family business to his brother to pursue his interest in art collecting:
Launching in 2001, Guan Yi’s internationally acclaimed collection—the first of its kind in mainland China—ranges in dates from the 1980s to the present and is especially noted for its emphasis on the work of the ’85 New Wave, conceptual art and large-scale installations. The collection includes works by the members of the Stars Group, a critical player in the beginning of contemporary Chinese art, and is also particularly strong in Chinese conceptual art throughout its trajectory over the last 30 years.
Spanning the years from 1979 to 2005, the donation includes works by Huang Rui, the New Measurement group, Huang Yong Ping, Wu Shanzhuan, Gu Dexin, Zhang Peili, Wang Guangyi, Wang Luyan, Lin Yilin, Liang Juhui, Chen Shaoxiong, Yan Lei, Zhou Tiehai, Xu Zhen, Chen Wenbo, Wang Yin, Shen Yuan, Zheng Guogu, Cao Fei and Duan Jianyu. The donation also includes the complete checklist of “Canton Express,” a historic exhibition that was a part of the 2003 Venice Biennale, which was the first major presentation on the international stage of contemporary art from the Pearl River Delta region.
Dr Lars Nittve, Executive Director, M+, said, “Many large-scale pieces did not receive attention from private collectors, especially prior to 2005, nor did they find homes in public collections. That such works were systematically preserved after their original exhibitions is no small feat. We are thrilled that a collector from mainland China has chosen to make a generous donation to a public cultural institution—it is an incredibly meaningful gesture.”