LiuWei, successful young Chinese artist, decorates a fascinating new illy Art Collection can.
The illy Art Collection Project, launched in 1992, now numbers more than 70 collections, with creative contributions by established artists and upcoming talents from all over the world. In 2006, the project was extended from cups only to the illy coffee can, transforming this simple, utilitarian object into a valuable, original designer piece, intended to enhance the daily coffee ritual and allow a small daily participation in the world of art. The words on the can are printed on a transparent, easy-to-remove film that allows the artist’s work in all its beauty to be revealed. The new designs are perfectly suited to the circular shape and vertical walls of the illy can. They immediately make us think of a metropolitanlandscape, but are reinterpreted in a highlyvisionarydimension - the unmistakable and original hallmark that defines all Liu Wei’s works.
Liu Wei is one of the most interesting young artists now working in China, where he was born in 1972 and graduated from the Hangzhou Academy of Fine Arts in 1996. He expresses his creativity through many art forms: from performance to sculpture, photography, video, painting and installations. Liu Wei’s early work explored cultural, social and political ideas, while his more recent creations concentrate on everyday objects and on materials, including ceramics, “to seek the hidden value they contain”. His most recent soloexhibitions have included “Liu Wei” at New York’s Lehmann Maupin Gallery, 2013, Trilogy at the Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai, and “Myriad Beings” at Beijing’s Today Art Museum, both in 2011. He has also participated in a number of prestigious international collective exhibitions, including this year’s Sharjah Biennial 11 in the United Arab Emirates, “DREAMLANDS” at the Pompidou Centre in Paris, 2010, “China Power Station: Part III”, Mudam Luxembourg 2008, “China Power Station: Part II”, Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, Oslo 2007, the 4th Guangzhou Triennial in 2012, the 6th Busian Biennial, 2008, the 9th Lyon Biennial in 2007 and the 51st Venice Biennial in 2005.
He has previously collaboratedwithilly at the Galleria illyLondon (2011), and a year later at the Galleriailly in Beijing.