In Otherworldly Realms of Wu Junyong, heroes face off in mighty clashes with their enemies; charming animals growl at one another, vying for superiority; and troubled souls retreat into murky caves, searching for inner peace. The exhibition, on view at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA), starting January 13, 2023, marks the artist’s U.S. museum debut.
Wu (born 1978) grew up in a family of artisans who created sculptures and murals for local temples in their southern Chinese village. Immersed in China’s folklore throughout his childhood, he became fascinated with European painting and the heroes of ancient Greek mythology after arriving in art school. His work reflects all these influences, seamlessly blending diverse historical traditions with his contemporary experience to express human emotions, conflicts and aspirations that transcend time and borders.
Otherworldly Realms of Wu Junyong features more than a dozen mixed-media works on paper, where, beneath playful imagery, exuberant brushstrokes and riotous color, dark truths hide and serenity awaits in secluded haunts.
Museum visitors will have a unique opportunity to see painting performances by the artist at the MFA’s Lunar New Year celebration on February 2. The annual event will offer $5 admission for the evening (5–10 pm), lion dances and Spotlight Talks in the galleries.
The press release is available in English and Chinese on mfa.org.
“Otherworldly Realms of Wu Junyong” is generously supported by Bonnie Huang. Additional support from Eva Hu, the Joel Alvord and Lisa Schmid Alvord Fund, the Diane Krane Family and Jonathan and Gina Krane Family Fund and the Dr. Robert A. and Dr. Veronica Petersen Fund for Exhibitions.