Internationally renowned collage artist Virut Panchabuse has arrived in Queenstown to open his first ever New Zealand show.
The Bangkok (Thailand) based artist will unveil his solo art exhibition at Artbay Gallery at a special evening event on Friday 22nd February.
Born in 1980 in Thailand, Virut graduated with a BFA from the King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology, Ladkrabang, Bangkok. He first rose to fame in Thailand for his light and delicate paintings but after seeing a number of copycat artists, he re-invented his style and took on the challenging medium of collage art. His large-scale portraits are made with thousands of tiny pieces of paper torn magazines and newspapers. The eye-popping results are renowned for their detail, emotion and diversity.
After phenomenal success in Asia, Virut gained global attention and held sell-out shows in Amsterdam (2017) and Bahrain (2018). Artbay Gallery Director Pauline Bianchi says she is “very, very excited” to host Virut’s first New Zealand show.
“I have the privilege of having sole representation of this amazing artist in New Zealand,” says Pauline.
“Virut is one of the worlds’ most unique and talented artists; his portraits are truly magical in the way they capture a split second of raw emotion. You have to view his work in the flesh to fully realise that. In my opinion, a great artwork continues to unveil itself over time, and Virut’s artwork certainly does this.”
Virut adds that visiting New Zealand is a “childhood dream”.
“After a chance introduction to Pauline Bianchi while I was doing a show in Los Angeles, my dream has become a reality. It’s wonderful to be here and feel the power of the land, and the power of the spirit here. I create emotion and spirit in my artwork, and I can feel it fits well in New Zealand, because art is an international language. I feel fortunate and grateful to be dealing with such a high-end art gallery in New Zealand,” he says.
One of Virut’s largest-ever portraits, a 200cmx200cm image of a Maori man, entitled ‘Golden Spirit’, will be unveiled at the event.
From its two galleries on Queenstown’s waterfront, Artbay Gallery has hosted a number of internationally popular artists, some of which have sold out shows in art hotspots like Amsterdam and New York.
“Queenstown is an international destination, it’s a ‘world stage’ and this has enabled me to entice the best artists and art I find overseas back to New Zealand,” says Pauline.
The Virut exhibition opening is free to attend, but space is limited and booking is recommended. All artworks will be for sale.
See the full range of Virut's artworks at Artbay Gallery online here - or visit the gallery to see his artworks in the flesh.