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Upcoming Exhibitions

Colette Fu: We Are Tiger Dragon People

Saturday, February 02, 2019 - Sunday, September 08, 2019

Sparked by curiosity and the desire to explore her roots, artist Colette Fu began traveling to China’s Yunnan Province where 25 of the nation’s 55 minority tribes live. While there, she was able to experience and document the customs of many groups, including the Black Nuosu Yi tribe of which her mother and Roanoke resident Pearl Fu is a member. The artist’s long immersion in the unique cultures of Yunnan culminated in a spectacular collection of intricate pop-up books and photo collages called We Are Tiger Dragon People.

This exhibition not only follows Fu’s work in China, but also showcases earlier artworks inspired by unique destinations around the United Sates, demonstrating Fu’s process from photography to meticulously composed collages brought to life through lightboxes and three dimensional structures. Fu’s centerpiece of the exhibition is the world’s largest pop-up book titled Tao Hua Yuan Ji, which measures 13.8 x 21 feet when open. This massive paper structure, inspired by a Jin Dynasty poem about a secret utopian valley, depicts a cave ensconced in giant peach blossoms that Fu visited in 2008. Standing nearly 5-feet tall at its apex, the paper cave is large enough to crawl inside.

Colette Fu received her MFA in Fine Art Photography from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2003, and soon after began devising complex compositions that incorporate photography with pop-up paper engineering. She has designed for award-winning stop-motion animation commercials and free-lanced for clients including Vogue China, Canon Asia, Moët Hennessy, Louis Vuitton, and the Delaware Disaster Research Center. Fu's numerous awards include a Fulbright Research Fellowship to China and grants from the Independence Foundation, Leeway Foundation, En Foco, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, CFEVA (Center for Emerging Visual Artists,) New York Foundation for the Arts, Virginia Commission for the Arts, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Puffin Foundation and Society for Photographic Education.

A passionate educator, Fu also teaches art-making as a way to give voice to communities through pop-up paper engineered projects. She teaches pop-up courses and community workshops to marginalized populations at art centers, universities and institutions internationally.

Colette Fu: We Are Tiger Dragon People is curated by Eva Thornton, Assistant Curator for the Taubman Museum of Art, and will be on display February 2 – September 8, 2019 in the Medical Facilities of America Gallery and Temporary Exhibition Gallery.

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Above image:

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), Yi Costume Festival (detail), 2014, Pop-up book, 33” x 23”, Courtesy of the Artist

Images (left to right, top to bottom)

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), Kaifuna (detail), 2017, Pop-up book, 25” x 17”, Courtesy of the Artist

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), Wa Hair Swinging Dance (detail), 2016, Pop-up book, 25” x 17”, Courtesy of the Artist

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), Tai Yang Village (detail), 2011, Pop-up book, 25” x 17”, Courtesy of the Artist

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), Yi Costume Festival (detail), 2014, Pop-up book, 33” x 23”, Courtesy of the Artist

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), The Story of Jingpo Brocade (detail), 2017, Pop-up book, 25” x 17”, Courtesy of the Artist

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), Tao Hua Yuan Ji (detail), 2017, Pop-up book, 21’ x 13.8’ , Courtesy of the Artist

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), Axi Fire Festival (detail), 2014, Pop-up book, 33” x 23”, Courtesy of the Artist

Colette Fu (American, Contemporary), Sunning the Buddha (detail), 2017, Pop-up book, 25” x 17”, Courtesy of the Artist