Jia Aili


Born in 1979 in Liaoning Province (China) and a graduate of the Luxun Academy of Fine Arts, Jia Ai’li lives and works in Beijing. 

 Jia Aili is representative of one of the most vibrant painting traditions in contemporary Asia but yet as part of a post 80s generation, his language is unique. A product of the one-child policy introduced in 1978, Jia, who was born in 1979, expresses the sentiments and attitudes of his generation: Growing up in the ‘new’ China, although knowing no economic hardship and having no political baggage yet feeling isolated and alone as they enter adulthood.

His main solo exhibitions around the world include the following: Jia Aili, CAC Malaga, Centro de Arte Contemporaneo, Malaga, Espana; Jia Aili, Teatrino di Palazzo Grassi, Venice, Italy; Seeker of Hope, at Singapore Art Museum; The Dharma Bums, at the Hartell Gallery, Cornel University (Ithaca, USA); Good Morning, World!, at the OCT Center of He Xiangning Art Museum (Shenzhen, China); Make Believe, at the Institute of International Visual Arts (London, 2010); The Wasteland, at Platform China (Beijing, 2017). His works have been shown in group exhibitions, at Pinchuk Art Centre (Kyiv, 2014); National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Seoul, 2013); a special exhibition at the 54th Venice Biennial (MENGLONG – OSCURITÃ, Venice, 2011); Guangzhou Triennial (2008); Shanghai Art Museum (2006 and 2007), and China National Museum (Beijing 2006), to name only a few.

Often with a greyish and bluish hue, the artist’s works are known for presenting a world in which solemnity and violence co-exist, a world on the brink of collapse. His is a solemn and romantic detour, in contrasts with a Chinese art world which is, to a varying extent, clamorous and unsteady. Using pictorial language the public is well acquainted with to depict space and canvas elements, and to arouse courage and the visual appeal, his works energize the senses of the soul, which are indescribable but are the essence of oriental aesthetics we have come to appreciate.