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Today Art Museum (TAM)

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Seedy Showing

by Edward Sanderson
The sound of cracking coming from people’s mouths and underfoot was perhaps the first indication that there was something different about this opening. Today Art Museum’s galleries were filled with the great and good of the Chinese art world for the opening of The Second Academic Exhibition of Chinese Contemporary Prints, subtitled: Print•Concept. But throughout, while chatting and viewing the artworks on the walls, many were distractedly clutching small handfuls of sunflower seeds, cracking them open with their front teeth with more or less proficiency, and spitting out or letting the husks fa... [more]
Posted by Edward Sanderson on 11/6/11
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In Bed with Zhang Xiaogang

by Edward Sanderson
With an artist as well known as Zhang Xiaogang, it’s perhaps difficult for audience perceptions to move on from the clichés of “Chinese art” that his work has come to represent.  This issue is equally relevant for artist themselves in their quest to develop their work. Zhang’s solo show at the Today Art Museum in Beijing demonstrates the artist’s attempt to devolop and energize his signature forms. Zhang Xiaogang’s canvases since the early 1990s have been characterized by figures in the stiff and formalized style of photographic portraiture, emphasizing a flatness of the characte... [more]
Posted by Edward Sanderson on 12/28/10
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The Spiritual Realm in Real Life

by Wang Yun
Born in 1970, Cui Xiuwen now lives and works in Beijing. She was trained in the Central Academy of Fine Arts and graduated in 1996. Cui’s early paintings were startling to their audiences because they showed nude men at a time when male models were usually covered. Cui switched to video by the turn of the century in order to broaden the range of expression she was able to explore. “Ladies” is a work about sex in contemporary China which brought Cui to  international attention. In 2004, a girl with school uniform began to appear in Cui’s video and photographic assemblages. Through the girl wi... [more]
Posted by Wang Yun on 11/16/10

Critics' Picks: Music to My Eyes

Synesthesia was a frequent fascination of Western modernists. In “Music to My Eyes,” Beijing-based curator Karen Smith’s variation on this old theme, visitors heard bands including Girl Kill Girl, Dead J, and ZigZag. They see Liu Ye’s small paintings of Mozart, Chet Baker, and Taiwanese pop singer Teresa Teng and enter Kaleidoscope (all works 2009), a cycloramic environment designed by Chen Hangfeng and Ben Houge, which displays—on six walls and in real time—images taken through a kaleidoscope at the door of the museum. Changing Street Orchestra by Mathieu Borysevicz uses three-screen cinematic ju... [more]
Posted by Ben Houge on 4/30/09