The Hill Art Foundation, opening in New York in September 2018, announces its first public exhibition, during Art Basel in Hong Kong at H Queen’s, the city’s newest center for art and culture. On view March 27 through April 8, 2018, the show will feature 13 major paintings and works on paper by acclaimed artist, Christopher Wool, from the Hill Art Collection, one of the world’s most renowned private art collections. The non-commercial exhibition will be the first survey presentation of Wool’s work in Asia. It also marks the first time a prominent American collector will show their collection of contemporary art publicly in Asia.
As one of the most significant artists working today, Wool is best known for bold paintings of monochromatic abstraction and large stenciled letters. J. Tomilson Hill and his wife, Janine, have been among the earliest and most committed supporters of Christopher Wool, and hold the largest private or public collection of the artist’s work in the world.
J. Tomilson Hill: “I sometimes ask myself, why am I compelled to collect certain artists in depth, and not others? In cases like Bacon, de Kooning, Twombly and Warhol, it is understandable as the work is far-ranging and demands it of a collector. With Wool, I am likewise compelled; as with the others, it is the breadth of the artist’s vision that I am after. Some artists can fully convey what they have to say in one or perhaps two works. With Wool, this is not the case. He is an artist that reveals himself over a spectrum of abstract statements that cannot be narrowed down to just a few works. So here we are with an array of works to highlight his expressive range.”
Christopher Wool: Highlights from the Hill Art Collection will highlight over four decades of the artist’s oeuvre. Early works on paper, such as Riot (1987), and paintings, such as Untitled (PRANKSTER), from 1989 will join the artist’s more gestural canvases from the late 1990s and early 2000s. The exhibition will focus on the artist’s crucial role in the history of abstraction, highlighting his relevance in a global art world. In light of Asia’s growing interest in Western art and the important role the region plays in the contemporary art world, the show offers an opportunity for Asian audiences to appreciate one of the most influential painters of his generation.
The exhibition also serves as a prelude to a more comprehensive survey of Christopher Wool works in the Hill Collection, which will be the inaugural show at the forthcoming Hill Art Foundation in September 2018. The H Queens exhibition will be accompanied by panel discussions focusing on topics ranging from the importance of Christopher Wool in the history of abstraction, to insights on building a world-class art collection, to the role of private foundations and museums.
The Hill Art Collection is widely known for Renaissance and Baroque bronzes, Old Master paintings, Post-War & Contemporary and, a more recent focus on mid-career American and Chinese artists, a majority of whom are women. Works from the Collection have been loaned to prominent museums worldwide. Bronzes and part of the Post-War collection were part of a landmark exhibition at the Frick Collection in 2014. One of the Collection’s defining features is how it creates dialogue among works of art from diverse aesthetic and periods. The Christopher Wool exhibition in Hong Kong is driven by the same guiding principles. It also signals an important step for the Hill Art Collection, which will be publicly accessible when the Hill Art Foundation opens its permanent exhibition and educational space, at the Peter Marino-designed Getty Building in the Chelsea art district in New York.
The exhibition is organized with the assistance of Luhring Augustine Gallery, a New York based gallery and primary representative of Christopher Wool for over thirty years.
In Hong Kong, the exhibition is produced by Alexandre Errera’s independent art advisory and special projects firm. The idea of showing highlights of the Hill Art Collection in Hong Kong originated from Errera, who has helped source artworks by living artists for the Hill Art Collection. Astrid Hill, Director of Programming at the Foundation, and an independent art advisor based in New York, was also instrumental in the organization of the exhibition.
Opening Reception | Wednesday, March 27, 2018: 6:00pm – 8:30pm
Daily Public Hours | Monday – Sunday, March 28 – April 8, 2018: 10:00am – 7:00pm
Born in 1955 Christopher Wool grew up in Chicago. In 1972, he settled in Manhattan, where he enrolled in classes at the New York Studio School and briefly studied film at New York University. Wool’s work has always been closely tied to his urban surroundings, and as early as 1986, he began to create monochrome paintings that employed commercial tools and imagery appropriated from a variety of cultural sources. Since the early 1990s, Wool has relied on the silkscreen process in his work. While Wool is primarily known as a painter, his photographs, sculptural work, artist books, and prints are also integral to his practice.
Wool’s work has been presented at institutions around the world, including solo exhibitions at San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (1989); Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne, and Kunsthalle Bern (1991); Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (1998), Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh (1998–99), and Kunsthalle Basel (1999); Institut Valencià d'Art Modern and Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain, Strasbourg (2006); Museu de Arte Contemporânea de Serralves, Porto (2008–09), and Museum Ludwig, Cologne (2009); Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2012); and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Art Institute of Chicago (2013–2014). In 2014, the artist’s first public sculpture was installed in Chicago.
Wool currently lives and works in New York City and Marfa, Texas.