china

… some aspects concerning different viewpoints: First here to be recommended a still ongoing platform at Berlin’s HKW titled China – Between Past and Future mainly showing work of younger artists living and working in China. The accompanying show titled Between Past and Future focuses on the developments of new forms of expression during the 90s in Bejing’s East Village especially in the field of photography and performance.

… photography primarily served propagandistic purposes during the first thirty years of the People’s Republic of China, following the Cultural Revolution of 1976 and the death of Mao Tse-tung it gradually provided an opening for individual artistic expression. Since the mid 1990s, this particular art scene has established itself as an experimental avant-garde.
The exhibition, which explores central themes and lines of development within contemporary Chinese photography, has four different sections: „History and Memory“, „Performing the Self“, „Re-Imagining the Body“ and „People and Place“.

Over 100 works will be shown that reflect the unparalleled economic, social and cultural changes undergone by China during the 21st century.

…. and an longer article of NYT (via IFTF) describing aspects of western introduction of selfcensorship to adjust to chinese standards with the example of google’s censored invention of its own site:

… The Chinese system relies on a classic psychological truth: self-censorship is always far more comprehensive than formal censorship. By having each private company assume responsibility for its corner of the Internet, the government effectively outsources the otherwise unmanageable task of monitoring the billions of e-mail messages, news stories and chat postings that circulate every day in China….

Currently, all of wikipedia.com is blocked; the group is trying to convince Wikipedia’s overseers to agree to the creation of a sanitized Chinese version with the potentially illegal entries removed. They argue that this would leave 99.9 percent of Wikipedia intact, and if that material were freely available in China, they say, it would be a great boon for China, particularly for underfinanced and isolated schools. …

.. to finally recall as well the taken off bloggers like Zhao and the summing up of more recent events as described by the now imprisoned blogger Tian Yi at Globalvoices.

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3 Comments

  1. 5/1/2006
    Reply

    Interesting juxtaposition. Curious, too, that it speaks to an inversion of conventional expectations of authority and anonymity (i.e., wikipedia, which seeks to be an authoritative source of knowledge, operates essentially anonymously, while the bloggers and avant-garde artists-to whom the prospect of anonymity might appear to be more appealing-are generally working under identifiable names).

  2. 5/2/2006
    Reply

    .. good point ..

    I think it is generally confusing and difficult to get a chinese impression (and who is behind it to sell it .. ) as I wondered who put together the exhibition here in Berlin – which in the exhibition part was quite interesting and one of the better I saw, while the accompanying program of what could be considered traditionally performing arts was just up to avarage expectations – the usual what to see from China ..

  3. 5/2/2006
    Reply

    Well, the exhibition portion is part of a travelling program originally organized by the ICP in New York (where I saw it), and the Smart Museum at the University of Chicago, and was curated by Wu Hung and Christopher Phillips. As for what exactly constitutes a “Chinese impression,” that’s another question altogether.

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