Odyssey and Homecoming

The Palace Museum, Beijing

December 15, 2020

Cai Guo-Qiang’s exhibition Odyssey and Homecoming at the Forbidden City’s Palace Museum opened to the public on December 15.

Coinciding with the 600-year anniversary of the Forbidden City’s founding, the first-ever solo exhibition of a contemporary artist at the Palace Museum assembles approximately 180 of Cai’s signature gunpowder paintings and other works, from Cai’s ambitious multi-year Individual’s Journey Through Western Art History, as well as his dialogues with Eastern aesthetics, his original passion for painting, and his eternal homeland, the cosmos.

The exhibition is curated by Sir Simon Schama and co-organized by the Beijing Winter Olympics Committee and the Palace Museum. Odyssey and Homecoming will be on view through February 5, 2021.

The Birth of Tragedy

Cognac, France

September 25, 2020

As the coronavirus pandemic gradually stabilizes and the world restores its energy, Cai Guo-Qiang’s daytime explosion event, The Birth of Tragedy, was brought to a worldwide audience from Charente in Cognac, France via livestream on September 25th, 2020 at 3 PM CET / 9AM EDT. Twenty thousand shots of fireworks were launched from 150 oak barrels floating on the river, to honor the universal values of resilience, courage, and hope, and to demonstrate mankind’s heroic faith in life and power after a strenuous feat.

The Birth of Tragedy was commissioned as part of “A World Odyssey,” which marks Hennessy X.O’s 150th anniversary. Cai’s daytime fireworks use exclusively non-toxic, eco-conscious, CE-certified pyrotechnic products.

Left: Photo by Simon Cassanas, courtesy Hennessy