Chen and Qiu are part of a younger generation of Chinese artists utilising the methods and aesthetics of traditional ink painting to create contemporary works. Steeped in a history of over a thousand years, Chinese ink painting is one of the most traditional art forms still widely practised in China today. Chen and Qiu work experimentally with traditional techniques and forms to create engaging new works which meditate on life in 21st century China.
Over the last 30 years the area of Southern China has gone through a period of intense change from communist isolation to economic capital. Living through this period, Guagzhou based artist Chen Shaoxiong highlights the details of daily life in a fast developing city. His animations document his experiences as a single unit through which he hopes to illuminate the relationship between the individual and society. For Contemporaneous Chen will be showing a four screen installation animation and fingerprint paintings using Chinese ink and paper.
Shanghai artist Qiu Anxiong uses Chinese myths as a vehicle through which to illustrate contemporary issues and concerns. Using the style of traditional ink painting, Qiu’s animations play out popular Chinese legends in contemporary urban settings. For Contemporaneous Qiu will show large scale high definition projected animation where mythical creatures are used to highlight current concerns over the environment and the world’s potential energy crisis.
Contemporaneous is programmed as part of Asia Triennial Manchester 08. The UK’s first Asian Art Triennial, ATM08 opens 5 April -1 June 2008 and will show fresh, innovative work that represents the best of contemporary visual art from Asia: a festival of visual culture that not only celebrates Manchester’s diverse communities but also explores cultural, artistic and political debates. Visit www.asiatriennialmanchester.com for more information. ENDS
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