UCCA 2015 Gala: Beijing Art scene's most glamorous night

By Nick Bedard ( ) Updated: 2015-11-25 14:55:07

Everyone was dressed to impress. The red carpet covered (UCCA) main foyer. The lights from above were installed about a week before the event to ensure the row of celebrities making their grand entrance to the 2015 UCCA Gala was lit in the most flattering light.

On a snowy day, the road in Beijing's 798 Art Zone leading up to UCCA's front doors was crystal clear. The three standing dinosaurs outside Beijing's top art institution awaited the art scene's most glamorous night.

"The Gala is our biggest event of the year," said UCCA CEO May Xue.

"We spend months preparing for this event, and every year we try and make it bigger and bigger."

It started with a meet and greet for China's art VIPs in UCCA’s main lobby. Each celebrity waited their turn to walk the red carpet onto the stage where about 50 members of the media were ready with their cameras.

For Chinese artists, it's a chance to rub shoulders with some of the industry's top collectors. Actors, designers, and architects all participate in the social gathering to establish their presence in the Chinese art scene at the heart of Beijing's 798 Art Zone. One thing all the guests have in common is they are looking fabulous, flaunting fashionable outfits for the cameras from various media outlets.

"It's important for us, as an international art institution in China to make sure this event represents the sophistication and creativity UCCA brings to the art industry," said Xue.

A total of 480 VIPs from China's art scene filled UCCA's Great Hall which Beijing artist Wang Jianwei turned into a conceptual site he titled Feelings. Informed by the artist's concept of Rehearsal, the room introduced a combination of performances, light shows, video projections, and sound blurring the boundaries of exhibition and theater. It pushed the museum's signature space into a new territory. The evening raised 10.8 million RMB ($1.7 million) with 9.5 million RMB ($1.5 million) coming directly from the benefit auction.

View the next few pages for the Top 3 auctioned paintings at the 2015 UCCA Gala.

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