*This is the last of three writings exploring a trip to Beijing and how culture defines humanity. Community transcends a new political reality and rejects negative discourse. Connections remain strong thanks to the power of art…
Beijing delivers masterfully. The art kicks ass conceptually mixed with a long history unafraid to take new risks. Nestled in the city’s outskirts, busy alleys, and downtown contemporary architectural gems- art can be found everywhere. It’s exciting, elegant, and happening right now.
Artist Wu Wei cuts paper so finely that from far away it can resemble fine fur and up-close the texture of our skin. During a studio visit, he shared inspiration and the keen minimalist ability to edit life’s clutter. Kim’s exhibition history includes Whitebox Art Center, Power Station of Art, Minsheng Museum, Leonard Pearlstein Gallery, and Henan Art Museum.
The last stop would be the Red Brick Museum. It is massive with 10,000 square meters of exhibition space. Just when the trip couldn’t get any better- it did. The main exhibit was an intensive survey of Chinese social political art and performance spanning decades. The Wen Pulin Archive of Chinese Avant-Garde Art of the 1980s and 1990s had it going on and more.
From the wall text: “To some extent, these artists, like Shaman sorcerers, were capable of foreseeing that, what had been dormant in the universe was to be awoken, so they started one step ahead. In an age of great social transformation the influence that artists could have was rather limited, but they were undoubtedly vanguards….”
The works, artists, and history were ground breaking to my Western perspective. Every trip to China delivers insight into how culture defines identity. What is right and wrong? How does history influence experience? Art will conquer political discourse and unite humanity.
Until next time China.