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SAATCHI’S NEW SPACE: Charles Saatchi’s much-hyped Saatchi Gallery made its debut at its new home in a handsome, revamped former army barracks near Chelsea’s Sloane Square Thursday. And, to mark the gallery’s opening following a three-year hiatus, when it vacated the previous location in South London, Saatchi has spotlighted the work of several Chinese artists in the sprawling, 70,000-square-foot space.
Pieces on show in the exhibition, called “The Revolution Continues: New Art From China,” range from a series of haunting portraits by Zhang Xiaogang to Liu Wei’s sculptures of miniature versions of the Colosseum in Rome and the Guggenheim in New York fashioned from unfurled dog chews, called “Love It! Bite It!.” Another of the airy, light-filled rooms is devoted to Sun Yuan and Peng Yu’s work “Old Persons’ Home,” in which lifelike sculptures of old men — dressed to resemble world leaders — are slumped in electric wheelchairs that continually collide with one another in the space.
And, while Lily Allen, Dasha Zukhova and Tracey Emin were among those who turned up to fete the gallery’s opening Tuesday night, Saatchi’s wife, Nigella Lawson, was there without the art patron himself. She instead brought her former politician father, Sir Nigel Lawson, along. According to reports, the reclusive Saatchi skipped the opening to watch television at home.