Chinese painter Shi Shaoping is to show in his first European solo exhibition at the Royal College of Art, London. Occupying over 500 metres square of the gallery, The Metamorphosis Series, features an extensive collection of 40 of his latest works, some an impressive five metres by two. The show has been timed to coincide with the Frieze art fair and will be the first in a two city tour; next stop, Paris.
Shi Shaoping's work is defined by mysterious creatures which captivate the viewer. At first they look familiar but quickly they mutate beyond recognition. The Metamorphosis Series documents the evolution of this form. At times the transition appears peaceful and serene. In other parts of the series the scene is turbulent and tragic. It's a dramatic journey and one that leaves the viewer curiously attached to Shi Shaoping's playful bugs.
Growing up in a fast shifting society has left Shaoping fascinated by change and progress and his works are concerned with the themes of transformation and anticipation. The paintings featured in The Metamorphosis Series have all been created in the last three years and once again, the series is a step beyond his earlier works. Here the colours and lines are paramount and secondary is Shaoping's 'super species' which starts to materialize on the canvas.
The artist's Monograph, published later this year, will also be launched at the exhibition with early copies available at the show.