Chen Yu

Trained in the art of engraving and having worked in the publishing industry, Chen Yu chose to become a painter to focus on creating a world of his own and to work by himself among his works, almost like traditional Chinese painters. Influenced by the art of printmaking, Chen Yu differentiates himself with the monotony of his subjects, which are cloned as if they were reproduced by the printing press. Rows of duplicated human heads are a constant symbolic feature in his paintings. Their repetition questions the place given to individuality and its expression. In some series of works, only one protagonist has his/her eyes open. The portraits repeat with boredom, with the figures looking detached from each other and forlorn, while among them one figure looks on. The artist’s sense of humour is perceptible in the way he illustrates individuality. The gestures or expression of the singled out character is most of the time hilarious. Sometimes picking one’s nose, water being poured on one’s bold head, looking at the spectator with a cigarette in one’s mouth, etc. are examples of such attitudes the artist picks to make one person among his created crowds stand out. Above the figures, a single motif absurdly floats in the composition, breaking this monotonous pattern by bringing the attention away from the human subjects. Over the years, his style and technique have matured into more realistic aesthetics, still crisp but with more accomplished renderings and a more subtle colour palette. In recent works, Chen Yu explores individuality in new ways, the difference between the characters are shown in gender, outfits, and facial expressions. The figures appear to be more related, less isolated and if one individual is distinguished, the others seem to interact with him or her - their eyes are open




Born in Guizhou in 1969

Graduated from the engraving department of the Central Academy of Fine Arts in 1993



 "three of us - joint exhibition of three of us: Yu Chen, Chen Yu and Chen Li brothers and sisters" Yang International Art Center Beijing

Korea Art Expo 2017 Korea

"A room of meandering, or false Carnival" in mayano space Beijing

Art Singapore


art Singapore


"return to the landscape art museum" Beijing

"Dreamer" YCL Gallery Beijing

Young collection collection collection collection of young Turkish collectors proje4l elgiz Museum of contemporary art Istanbul, Turkey


"three of us" Yu Chen, Chen Yu, Chen Li third joint exhibition YCL Gallery Beijing

Utopian Rhapsody Nanjing


 "plateau reaction" Lijiang Art Festival Lijiang

Dimension / attitude 2012 - the 20th Anniversary Exhibition of Shaoli Gallery, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

The first Xinjiang Art Biennial, Urumqi, China


female image 9, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

Chen Yu, Chen Li United exhibition, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong


fifth round exhibition, X art space, Beijing

Vogue fashion and art, Beijing International Trade

Shanghai contemporary, Shanghai

The second joint exhibition of our three brothers and sisters Yu Chen, Chen Yu and Chen Li in 2008 is now called the art museum, Beijing

Review of the 15th anniversary of Shaoli Gallery 2007, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

Art Beijing, Beijing

Art London, Chelsea Royal Hospital, London

Miami Art Fair 2006, Miami Beach Convention Center, American mirt

11th Milan International Contemporary Art Fair, Milan, Italy

Beyond the canvas, Hong Kong

We three - Yu Chen, Chen Yu and Chen Li brothers and sisters jointly exhibited for the first time, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

Art Beijing, Beijing


exhibitions "eye for eye", Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

Bvlgari art project, Hong Kong

"Women's fragrance" Escada, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong

The second China International Gallery Expo, Shaoli Gallery, international trade exhibition hall, Beijing


art walk, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

China Contemporary Art Tour, SA lionja, Mallorca, Spain

Shaoli and Chinese Artists - Chinese artists memorial to the joint exhibition of Mr. Wen Shaoli's death, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

Open eyes 2003 - joint exhibition of Yu Chen and Chen Yu's brothers and sisters, lotus Arts de vivre, Bangkok, Thailand

China Contemporary Art Tour, Ludwig Museum, Budapest, Hungary

China Contemporary Art Tour, stadtgaree, bidesur, Poland


joint exhibition of 33 contemporary artists - opening ceremony of Shaoli Gallery, Shaoli Gallery, Beijing

The 10th anniversary celebration exhibition of Shaoli Gallery, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

Double show - Chen Yu and Yang Jinsong, Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

Contemporary Art Tour of China, kumlung growth Museum, Duisburg, Germany

China Contemporary Art Tour, Marco, Rome, Italy


copy, Hanmo Gallery, Beijing

Three round exhibition, Hanmo Gallery, Beijing

"Open one eye, close one eye", Shaoli Gallery, Hong Kong

Guangzhou International Art Fair 2000, Guangzhou

Taipei International Art Fair, Taipei


joint exhibition "the new and sharp eyes - the generation born around 1970

"International Art Museum, Beijing

Shenzhen He Xiangning Art Museum, Shenzhen

Second round exhibition, contemporary art museum, Beijing

Shanghai International Art Fair, Shanghai


round four exhibition, century art garden, Beijing

Invited exhibition of young artists, sunshine art salon, Beijing


excellent young artists works exhibition, Hanmo Gallery, Beijing


Artists Exhibition Beijing Music Hall Gallery

"Connection", Art Museum of Central Academy of fine arts, Beijing