Professor Jiang Jiehong at LOOK/17: UK/China Cultural Exchange II

Professor Jiang Jiehong at LOOK/17: UK/China Cultural Exchange II
Date and time
12 May 2017 (2:00pm - 3:30pm)
Tate Liverpool


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Jiang Jiehong is Professor of Chinese Art, Birmingham City University. He curated major exhibitions in China and the UK including the Guangzhou Triennial: the Unseen (2012), the Asia Triennial Manchester: Harmonious Society (2014) and more recently in 2016, the Shadow Never Lies in Shanghai Minsheng Art Museum and the Distant Unknown: Contemporary Art from Britain at OCAT Shanghai. Jiang is currently establishing a new postgraduate course, MA Contemporary Arts China (September 2017), which aims to foster innovative perspectives and new understandings of Chinese contemporary arts, design and visual culture through interdisciplinary practices, transcultural research and first-hand professional development experiences with more than 15 partnerships of art museums in the UK, China and internationally. His well-known book, An Era Without Memories: Chinese Contemporary Photography on Urban Transformation, published by Thames and Hudson in 2015, will be the basis for the talk on the impact of urbanisation on contemporary art practice in China. This event is programmed in association with LOOK/17 and is part of the week long event LOOK/17: UK/China Cultural Exchange II

The 10th CCVA Annual Conference: Chinese Art outside the Art Space

The 10th CCVA Annual Conference: Chinese Art outside the Artspace
Date and time
12 - 13 Oct 2017 (9:00am - 5:00pm)
Birmingham School of Art: Margaret Street (Map and Directions)
To be announced.

Historically, in China, ‘art outside the art space’ can be understood as both a cultural and a political proposition. From a cultural point of view, the notion of public ‘exhibition’ is entirely Western, whilst in the Chinese tradition of literati art for example, artworks were made, shared, and appreciated within the form of scholarly ‘elegant gathering’ (yaji), which was essentially a kind of private (rather than public) event within secluded (rather than institutional) spaces. From a political perspective, the ‘outside-ness’ immediately relates to the ‘unofficial’ status of contemporary Chinese art from its early development. For example, the first Star Group exhibition in September 1979 – generally acknowledged as the very first show that marked the beginning of contemporary art in China – was staged in a small public park just next to the China National Art Museum, outside the legitimated and official art space. Today, the situation of Chinese art taking place outside the museum and gallery spaces continues, but with a completely different momentum and agenda.

Art has been produced site-specifically for the spaces other than art institutions in China, including those of working venues, shown in a range of alternative spaces beyond galleries or museums, and has ‘happened’ in the public sphere and become political or social ‘events’, or artistic ‘incidents’, as a special form of ‘exhibition’. Creative curatorial and artistic strategies have been developed to respond to the constraints of art institutions, censorships and at the same time, to push the boundaries of art. Focusing on art made, displayed, performed or executed outside the conventional venues of art museums and galleries, this conference not only offers a unique perspective to understand Chinese art in the contemporary context, but also, more importantly, it aims to critically reflect upon the understandings between art and art exhibition, between artistic productions and audience perceptions, and between art and our daily life.

This conference will be focusing on the following series of relationships in the context of Chinese art and culture is seen indicative, but not limited to the discussions:

  •        China’s art museums, galleries and alternative spaces
  •        Curatorial strategies and artistic responses beyond institutional spaces
  •        Exhibitions, events and incidents
  •        Art production, dissemination, participation and reception
  •        Performance and performativity
  •        Art and everyday life
  •        Contemporary art and censorship