Xiao Hanqiu “Love stories and horror stories”

Lyles & King (19 Henry St.)

poster for Xiao Hanqiu “Love stories and horror stories”
[Image: Marching in a rainstorm of cherries and roses, 2022, oil on canvas, 35 3/8 x 47 1/4 in.]

This event has ended.

I escaped disaster by grabbing on to sharp rocks and vines like silver thread
The price was the sacrifice of my right hand.
My fierce and clumsy right hand. My right hand once covered your skin, tanning under the blazing sun. The wound never stopped dripping blood, dazzling the eyes. If you close your eyes, you will fall into a pure white abyss.

Those who have been to the eye of the storm say that it is incomparably quiet. That is where babies are birthed and the joyous gradually calm down.
I keep walking, bleeding the entire way. The blood shined in all directions, resembling a river-like kaleidoscope.
The person holding up a hand; one hand, holding up another hand.
—Love stories and horror stories by Xiao Hanqiu

Lyles & King presents painter and poet Xiao Hanqiu’s first solo exhibition in the United States, Love stories and horror stories. Xiao’s paintings on canvas juxtapose objects in situations that conjure the ethereal magic and intensity of being. Her paintings operate like her poems: linear narrative is rejected in favor of open questions that reflect on the complexity, ineffability, and inconstancy of experience. At first glance, Flying Rose and Seasoning Butterfly could be deemed lighthearted or sentimental, yet, upon examination there is a sense of the fantastical and macabre. The large flower between ambiguously gendered figures’ legs and poisonous grains of salt raining down upon the resting insect summarize Xiao’s signature preoccupation with mortality and eros. Xiao Hanqiu delicately threads wonder and play into an uneasy harmony with the id. In her poem, “Fairytale”, she writes: “The imagination of childhood/transforms into libido/and commands our subsequent lives.”

Xiao Hanqiu (b. 1986, Beijing, CN) received her MA in Fine Art from Chelsea College of Art and Design in 2011 and BA in Fine Art from Leeds University in 2008. Her work has been exhibited at Tabula Rasa Gallery, London, UK; Leo Gallery, Shanghai, CN; Tabula Rasa Gallery, Beijing, CN; and Canton Gallery, Guangzhou, CN; among others. She has published a number of poetry collections including A Dream Comes True (2019), Three Minutes to Midnight Flower Thief (2018) and Four Hearts (2015). She is represented by Tabula Rasa Gallery. She lives and works in Beijing.



from September 07, 2022 to October 15, 2022

Opening Reception on 2022-09-07 from 17:00 to 20:00


Xiao Hanqiu

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