For its third exhibition in the city, Massimo de Carlo Hong Kong is working with acclaimed painter Rob Pruitt to bring new works from his Panda Series to Asia for the first time.
Pruitt began making paintings of panda bears 17 years ago. Half black and half white, the panda bear is a symbol of harmony and equality, like a living, breathing yin yang symbol. But the panda bear is also a tragic symbol. With the encroachment of industry on its natural habitat, the species has been reduced to near extinction. Pruitt perceives the panda as embodying the role of the modern day Christ, the panda bear is dying out for our sins of greed and excess.
“Ironically, the campaign to save the panda bear has spawned a new infatuation with the creature, resulting in a growing wave of panda products and a rapacious consumer demand for them. Pandas may be an endangered species, but in our contemporary global culture, they are flourishing,” says Pruitt. The exhibition will see new paintings, in which panda bears have been extracted from their natural habitat and inserted into metaphysical spaces of spectral, gradient colour. Alluring and foreboding, the paintings evoke the worlds in which we are most likely to encounter the majestic panda bear today – the sleek, plastic surfaces of product design and the technological glow of computer touch screens.
This will not be the first time Pruitt exhibits new works at a Massimo De Carlo gallery. In 2013, his iconic “Suicide Paintings”, premiered at Massimo De Carlo in London. Massimo De Carlo gallery is excited to work with Pruitt again.