Bridget Riley: Solo exhibition at Art Central 2023

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Bridget Riley: Solo exhibition at Art Central 2023
Bridget Riley Solo Exhibition, 22 -25 March 2023. Art Central 2023, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

HONG KONG.- Participating for the 3rdtime in Art Central, as usual Tanya Baxter Contemporary stands out from the crowd with blue-chip works certain to appeal to serious art collectors in Asia. This year, the gallery is delighted to present the first-ever solo exhibition in Asia of Bridget Riley (b. 1931), an icon of Modern British art who first became known in the 1960s for her singular Op Art paintings, and who now in her 90s, continues to thrill audiences the world over with her highly original works. Riley’s paintings explore optical phenomena to evoke compelling, vibrant sensations of movement, colour and three-dimensionality.

Recently there has been a tremendous increase in focus on female artists worldwide, as seen in auction records and retrospective exhibitions in major museums. While Riley’s contemporaries such as Lucian Freud, Frank Auerbach and David Hockney continually draw critical attention, Tanya Baxter Contemporary feels it is appropriate to highlight the work of a woman artist of equal calibre and standing.

A retrospective exhibition spanning Bridget Riley’s 70-year career was held at the Scottish National Gallery and then the Hayward Gallery, London in 2019-2020, to great acclaim. Bridget Riley’s work is in the collections of major museums worldwide, including Tate Britain, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

In the art market, Riley’s work has followed a similar trend to artists like Freud and Hockney, gaining in global interest, and is now of great appeal to audiences both in the USA, Middle East and Asia. In 2016, Riley set a new record at auction with the sale of Diagonal Curve which sold for £4.3 million at Christie’s London.

Born in London, Bridget Riley studied at Goldsmiths' College from 1949 to 1952, and at the Royal College of Art from 1952 to 1955. Until 1960 she painted primarily impressionistic landscapes and figures. However, her study of the Pointillists, particularly Georges Seurat, led her to experiment with colour juxtaposition and optical effects in a way never attempted before by a female artist. Riley did not want to be categorised by her gender but judged by her merit as an artist.

In the latter part of the 20th century, Riley’s work gradually took on a geometric abstraction, in which intricate patterns of black and white and, later, alternating colours were calculated to produce illusions of movement. Her bold experimentation in visual effects is unique and emotionally evocative, her palette often inspired by impressions on her travels. Riley’s work has been likened to a passage of music, with carefully composed colour chords across the canvas, punctuated by accents of black to establish the rhythm and white to provide a pause.

Tanya Baxter Contemporary presents a carefully curated show, illustrating the development of Riley’s work from the 1960s to the present day, including works in a variety of different media. The artist’s output is very carefully controlled: she paints only 10 original works a year, making such paintings extremely rare and sought-after.

Highlights include an original painting in oil on linen: Rose Rose 14, dating from 2011, formerly in a private collection in North America; another oil painting, KA IV, dating from 1980, is currently on display in London. While prices for original paintings are from £500,000 - £1.5 million, also featured are several important paintings in gouache on paper, at prices below £500,000, including Bright Green, Blue and Red Surrounding One Another, Study 4, 1973; and Three Colours (Blue, Yellow and Turquoise) Precipitating Magenta, 1982.These are dynamic examples of the interplay between form and colour that permeates much of Riley’s work. Stripes are a recurring motif and are crucial in her exploration of the perceptual properties of colour.

A selection of rare limited-edition works in the exhibition, priced at £12,000 – 50,000 offer an accessible entry level and great opportunity for new collectors. Stunning screen prints on paper in the show include To Midsummer (1989), Fold (2004), About Lilac (2007) and Vista (2017).Nineteen Greys (from a set of four) dating from 1968 is a colour silkscreen, signed, titled, and numbered “Artists Proof” in pencil; while Untitled (Fragment 4) an Untitled (Fragment 6), dating from 1965, are screen prints on Plexiglas.

Tanya Baxter said, “We are very excited to take this opportunity to curate the first-ever solo show in Asia for Bridget Riley, one of the leading living female artists in the world. Collectors and art lovers at Art Central 2023 will have a chance to view and acquire an amazing selection of works by an artist whose influence in the art, academic and commercial worlds is unequivocal.”

Tanya Baxter has more than 25 years’ experience in the Post-Modern, Modern British and Contemporary art markets. Her bespoke services and personal curation cater to a prestigious clientele including multinational banks, hedge funds and luxury residential properties for whom she acts as house advisor.

Baxter cut her teeth as an art dealer in Hong Kong, opening one of Asia’s first Western galleries in the 1990s. With an art advisory now in both London and Hong Kong, she has maintained a continuity of activity in both cities and has a loyal following of Asian collectors, introducing Asian clients to Western art and bringing Chinese artists to collectors in London.

Tanya Baxter’s clients are major investors in blue chip art for whom art is an increasingly essential part of their investment portfolio. Her clients are all over the world, including the Middle East, the USA, Asia and Europe. She has an unparalleled understanding of the art market and a proven track record of sourcing works by renowned artists. Since 2015, Baxter has been the exclusive art curator at Heathrow Terminal 5’s VIP Lounge, offering rare investment opportunities to a high-profile clientele. She is also a guest lecturer at Sotheby’s Institute in London, and is Director of the Friends of the National Gallery of Ireland.

In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the opening of her London gallery, Tanya Baxter is proud to host an Exclusive Exhibition on Sunday, 26 March 2023 from 3 – 6 pm at 15th Floor, The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong. Clients are invited to view selected works by leading artists including David Hockney, Andy Warhol, Tracey Emin, William Scott, Ju Ming and Pip Todd Warmoth.

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