"How Chinese: Expanding the Discourse on Chinese Contemporary Art" Exhibition

Gallery 456 in Chinese-American Arts Council

poster for "How Chinese: Expanding the Discourse on Chinese Contemporary Art" Exhibition

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Expanding the Discourse on Chinese Contemporary Art, a group exhibition which is also participating in Asian Contemporary Art Week with a panel discussion and reception. Conceived jointly by art historian Aileen June Wang and artist Eric Jiaju Lee, the exhibition seeks to revise the mainstream definition of contemporary Chinese art. This category is often associated with artists who are based in mainland China, work in a figurative style, and address the Cultural Revolution and its legacy, or life in Communist China today. These artists, however, represent but a portion of the global Chinese population. Approximately thirty-five million Chinese reside elsewhere, and there are over fifty-five ethnic minorities in the country. The experiences of these groups differ from those in the mainland and the mainstream, with other cultures often having a significant influence on them as well. HOW CHINESE draws on artists representing a spectrum of the Chinese diaspora, as well as non-ethnic Chinese. Their works offer a complex and nuanced perspective about the way China and its culture has, or has not, influenced their consciousness and creativity. Some question the relevance of ethnic ancestry and cultural memory in the formation of an identity and artistic style. In contrast to the representational style of popular contemporary Chinese art, the works in this show are predominantly non-representational. They challenge the conventional notion of what “Chinese” art should be and what being Chinese means. The title of the exhibition operates simultaneously as a statement and a question. It was inspired by a query posed innocently to artist Eric Jiaju Lee by his grandfather-in-law: “How Chinese are you?”

Panel discussion & reception: Fri, May 15, 5:30 - 7:30pm



from May 01, 2009 to June 05, 2009
Panel discussion & reception: Fri, May 15, 5:30 - 7:30pm.

Opening Reception on 2009-05-01 from 18:00 to 21:00

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