Prepare to be wowed.
Chinese performance artist Li Wei will levitate in the skies above The Ringling to soar over the Ca’d’Zan and the statue of David at the Museum of Art courtyard at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. respectively on Monday, Nov. 17. There is no admission fee to view these performances and visitors are encouraged to photograph the artist and to share on social media.
Wei has thrilled audiences around the world with his genre challenging works. By presenting his bold ideas and activities, Wei has successfully combined performance and photography to challenge the audience’s understanding of reality and truth. He is famous for never using special effects or computer editing.
Wei has gained global acclaim for his “Fall” series of photographs, which depict him embedded in the street with his feet facing up or half-way submerged in a lake. Wei’s latest works include the ongoing “Fly” series, which he has recently performed at the Grand Palais in Paris and over the Piazza San Marco in Venice. The performance above the Ca’d’Zan will be a part of this series.
The Ringling has commissioned photographs from each of the artist’s performances on Nov. 17. The photographs will become a part of The Ringling’s permanent collection.
“Li Wei’s photography combines traditional Asian motifs and stunt performance with a circus flair,” Steven High, executive director of The Ringling said. “We are excited to offer contemporary Chinese art as taste of what’s to come as we continue to build our Center for Asian Art.”
The Ringling broke ground on the center in December of 2013. Construction is ongoing with a projected opening of February 2016. The center for Asian art project takes The Ringling in a new and exciting direction in its mission of promoting arts and research. The Ringling has commissioned Machado and Silvetti Associates to construct a new building and renovate a portion of the existing wing, which together will provide nearly 20,000 square-feet for the new center.
Wei’s performance at The Ringling is in conjunction with the exhibition “Seeing the Unseen,” currently on display in the Searing Wing of the Museum of Art. The exhibition features photography and film by eight contemporary Chinese artists include Wei. “Seeing the Unseen” will remain on display until Feb. 28, 2015. Wei will also present a public lecture at 5pm on Nov. 20 to share his performance ideas with the audience and reveal new photographs from the performances at The Ringling.