May 25th, 2016

China’s rising young stars shine in a man’s world

It takes more than talent for vastly outnumbered female artists to come to the fore

By: Lisa Movius       Source: The Art Newspaper           Date: 24/5/2016


Installation view of Guan Xiao: Flattened Metal in association with K11 Art Foundation, 20 April-19 June 2016, Institute of Contemporary Arts London (ICA). Photo: Mark Blower

The generation of artists born in the 1980s are increasingly claiming a place in the Chinese art world, garnering recognition for their more international bent, digital engagement and diversity of styles. But like the previous generation, they are predominantly male. Only a small, but significant, core of China’s rising stars are women. They include Lu Yang, whose video Wrathful King Kong Core featured in the China Pavilion at the 2015 Venice Biennale. Her contemporaries include the installation artists Guan Xiao, Miao Ying, Geng Yini and Ye Funa.
The Shanghai-based artist Bi Rongrong, who was born in 1982, is another rising star. She says: “I don’t see many other problems for women artists, just that there are so few of us. At our Songjiang studio complex, of 50 artists maybe five or less are women.” Bi, a professor at the Shanghai Institute of Visual of Art, says that at least half, and often the most talented, of her art students are women, but their ranks thin quickly after graduation.
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May 19th, 2016

Distract and Conquer: New Study Sheds Light on China’s Online Propaganda Strategy

By:   Josh Chin             Source: Wall Street Journal        Date: 19/5/2016


Contrary to popular belief, China’s legions of pro-government Internet commentators aren’t really out to convince critics of anything. They just want everyone to think happy thoughts.

That’s the conclusion of a first-of-its-kind study published this week by a trio of U.S.-based scholars that delves into a large, lightly examined archive of leaked Chinese propaganda emails.

Portrayals of Beijing’s online opinion warriors in both the media and academia have largely focused, perhaps not surprisingly, on those who draw attention to themselves, whether by spitting vitriol at China’s critics or by turning the criticism on other countries. In fact, according to the new study, the vast majority of China’s pro-government Internet users employ a subtler strategy. Continue reading

Around the World in 8 Papers: Itineraries for a History of Photography Beyond the Western Canon

Tomorrow I’ll be taking part in a study day organised by Mirjam Brusius as part of the University of Oxford’s ‘Photography Seminar’. It promises to be a very lively day of discussion and exchange with  papers tackling everything from Egyptian Studio Photography to Colonial Photography in Central America. I’ve included the full progamme below.

CfPs for two upcoming issues of the Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art (JCCA)

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I currently serve on the editorial board for the Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art, so I’m happy to announce that JCCA is currently soliciting submissions for two exciting new Issues slated to be published in 2017 under incoming Principal Editor Jiang Jiehong.

We would like to request that scholars submit abstracts for Issue 4.1, ‘The World of Art Museums in China’, to the following address by Wednesday 1 June:

You can find out more about the scope of this Issue here.

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We would also like to request submissions to the same address for Issue 4.2 & 3,‘Making the New World: The Arts of China’s Cultural Revolution’, by Friday 1 July. Find out about this Issue here.


Aims and Scopes
The Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art is a scholarly forum for new research into and critical debate on the subject of contemporary Chinese art. The journal welcomes contributions that address contemporary art produced in mainland China, Hong Kong-Macau and Taiwan as well as in relation to diasporic and trans-national Chinese cultural communities world-wide. The journal also welcomes contributions that address the relationship between Chinese cultural thought and practice and contemporary art of non-Chinese origin. The journal is open to non-standard contributions such as photographic essays and conversations for publication alongside its more usual peer-reviewed content.

Areas of research and debate that the journal will explore include, but are by no means limited to:
  • Contemporary art with a relationship to Chinese society, culture and history
  • Art-historical and critical writing related to the reception of contemporary Chinese art
  • Curatorial theory and practice related to the exhibition/display of contemporary      Chinese art
  • Contemporary Chinese aesthetics (as seen from Chinese and non-Chinese cultural perspectives)
  • The contemporary Chinese art market
  • Issues of historical importance to the development of contemporary Chinese art (e.g. cultural interaction and exchange between China and the West prior to the emergence of contemporary Chinese art)