“I paint my own life,” said Zao Wou-Ki, who died in 2013, “but I also try to paint an invisible place, that of dreams, somewhere where one feels in perfect harmony, even in the midst of agitated shapes or opposing forces.” A Chinese painter who lived most of his life in Paris, Zao was perhaps referring to a disharmony between East and West. In his work, he blended the traditions of both. In 1951, Zao met the architect I.M Pei. The two felt an affinity, collaborated on projects, and became lifelong friends. Pei died earlier this year. In homage to both artists Gagosian is featuring a series of paintings by Zao. The earliest works in this exhibition were commissioned by Pei. —E.C.
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