Opening - Beyond Limits @ Chatsworth

One of my absolute favorite shows every year is Beyond Limits - Sotheby’s annual selling exhibition of monumental sculpture. It's back in the magnificent gardens of the ancestral home of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire at Chatsworth, openin Sep 13. The 2010 selling exhibition showcases the works of several Asian artists, including Yue Minjun, Ju Ming and Subodh Gupta,  along with famous Western contemporary artists like Marc Quinn. In total, 24 works in a stunning landscape that often can give them new meanings. Yue Minjun presents an eye-catching set of 25 bronze figures entitled Contemporary Terracotta Warriors. They represent Minjun’s visual response to the 8,000-strong Qin dynasty terracotta warriors (221-206 BC), one of China’s world famous cultural attractions. The figures are placed within the stepped cascade at Chatsworth, imbuing them with the order of a military display. Ju Ming has two stainless steel sculptures entitled Swimming (see previous post on this new series). His bathers are juxtaposed within the estate’s rock pool. Subodh Gupta is represented with an important sculpture entitled Hungry God, a piece that features his characteristic aluminum pots and pans and which is installed in Paxton’s glasshouse known as the Conservative Wall. 

The New York-based Spanish sculptor's Butterflies takes centre stage with a prime positioning on the Duke’s private lawn in front of Chatsworth House. I love this work, and there will be a similar version at the Opera Gallery's next exhibition in Singapore later this month, titled Art Beyond Limits. Butterflies is a unique work that was executed earlier this year in aluminum, a material which both enables an extraordinary play of light over its surfaces while at the same time providing the tensile strength and weight-saving attributes needed to support its monumental headdress measuring over nine meters wide.