Chen Li Exhibition June 2017

Chen Li,  Untitled (Spirit of Twilight) , 2014, oil on linen canvas, 85cm x 85cm

Chen Li, Untitled (Spirit of Twilight), 2014, oil on linen canvas, 85cm x 85cm





19 June - 1 July 2017


First time in the U.K. - an exhibition of paintings and woodblock prints by Chen Li, an extraordinary artist from China's Yunnan Province


Chen Li (b.1971) lives in the spectacular beauty of Kunming, the capital of China’s Yunnan Province.

Inspired by Buddhist philosophy and Yunnan's stunning landscapes, Chen Li weaves a unique visual language by fusing the gestural qualities of Chinese ink painting with the colours and textures of Western oil painting.

Chen Li defies painting in any one style. "I never think of formal styles or schools of painting ... and this gives me unlimited possibilities. Just like writing a love letter, content is the key; what pen you use is not important."

I paint to fully express my ideas, my hopes. Chinese art and Western art have different views about reality. But when I paint, I ignore both man-made and natural rules to create living artistic images.”

In his first year on the international stage, Chen Li’s works have found homes in significant private collections in Britain, Italy and the United States and are inspiring a loyal following.  He has been shortlisted for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition 2017. This is his first exhibition in the U.K.

Nicolas Usherwood, Galleries Magazine editorial, June 2017

With post-millennial globalisation ... artists like Ai Weiwei [are] becoming as familiar in the West as Jeff Koons. But [Weiwei's] art is still essentially Western in its aesthetic - what happened to a Chinese artist who wanted to engage with his own artistic traditions and yet be recognised by a wider audience? These thoughts are provoked by the show of Kunming-based Chen Li's paintings and woodblock prints, put on by gallerist Katrine Levin at Debut Art & The Coningsby Gallery.

About Time Magazine

Listed as one of the best exhibitions to see in June by About Time Magazine


Outside exhibition days:

Select works are available to view outside exhibition days.

Please contact Katrine Levin at to make an appointment.